Important Updates
PD Awareness Week is September 12 - 17, 2016
Please join us in celebrating PD as a treatment option by using PD Awareness Week materials from our webpage to educate patients, family members ,and care partners.
Make it a Celebration, Make it Unique, and Make it Memorable!
The Network was charged by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to review New England dialysis facility ICH CAHPS scores from Fall 2015, and develop a Quality Improvement Activity to assist facilities in improving their scores on the overall lowest rated question  #39 "In the last twelve months, did either your kidney doctors or dialysis center staff talk to you about peritoneal dialysis?" 
Subsequently, the Network has been working with targeted QIA facility staff to help engage and educate their patients on PD as a treatment option.  PD Awareness Week was developed from this work. We need to ensure that ALL patients know their treatment options, are able to articulate why they chose that option, and that they remember hearing about PD at their dialysis clinic. 
Network Board Call for Nominations
Every year, nominations are accepted for the election of new, professional and patient, members to serve on the IPRO ESRD Network of New England ESRD Divisional Board and Medical Review Board.

The strength of the Network starts with collective leadership. If you or someone you know is interested in enriching their participation in the ESRD community, please nominate them today!

To submit a nomination, please complete the following:
  • If nominating someone other than yourself, please discuss the nomination prior to submission**
  • Review the Duties & Responsibilities of board members
  • Complete the Nomination Form 
  • Nomination forms must be submitted by Friday, September 30, 2016
Please note that terms of office are effective as of December 1, 2016.

** When submitting a nomination please include all contact information including an email address and phone number
Let Us Know How We Are Doing -
Complete the 2016 ESRD Network Needs Assessment
"Plan, Do, Study, Act".  Please help us study the work that we have done, and take the time to complete our 15 question Needs Assessment for 2016. Your feedback will help us in developing future activities and materials. We need your candid feedback to help us improve.
Complete the 2016 ESRD Network of New England Needs Assessment.
Registration Now Open - 2016 ESRD New England Fall Meeting

Participant registration is now open. Click here.
For more information, visit the Network website.
Quality Improvement
CMS Technical Expert Panel
Nominations are due September 7 for a Technical Expert Panel (TEP) on quality measures to satisfy the Improving Medicare Post-Acute Care Transformation Act of 2014 (IMPACT Act). CMS is developing cross-setting post-acute care measures for the quality measure domain - Function Status, Cognitive Function, and Changes in Function and Cognitive Function.
Visit the Technical Expert Panels webpage for more information.
CDC Bloodstream Infection Reduction Resources
To support your efforts in reducing bloodstream infections at your facility, please find below a link to an important campaign from the CDC, entitled "Clean Hands Count."
The 'Clean Hands Count' campaign offers posters, factsheets, and brochures for healthcare providers and patients. To order free copies of these materials, please visit CDC-INFO on Demand .
Forum of ESRD Networks Toolkits
The Medical Advisory Council (MAC) of the Forum has created five resources to assist facilities in meeting the requirements of the Conditions of Coverage. They are available for free download. These toolkits address: the role of the medical director, medication reconciliation, vaccination, diabetes care coordination, and catheter reduction.

Click here for more information and to download these toolkits.
Advanced Renal Education Program eLearning
The Advanced Renal Education Program (AREP) offers many eLearning courses for the kidney community, including Anemia Management in Kidney Disease. This course discusses the clinical manifestations, diagnostic criteria, etiologies and guideline recommendations on the management of anemia in Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD). It provides an overview on iron deficiency anemia, Erythropoietin Stimulating Agents (ESAs) recommendations and the use of IV vs. oral iron agents.
For more information, to take the course, or to explore other courses offered by AREP, click here.
Patient Services
2016 National Preparedness Month
September is recognized as National Preparedness Month (NPM) which serves as a reminder that we all must take action to prepare, now and throughout the year, for the types of emergencies that could affect us where we live, work, and  visit. Due to the success of last year's theme, " Don't Wait, Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today," will be returning for this September with a continuing emphasis on preparedness for youth, older adults, people with disabilities, and others with access and functional needs.  Thank you for taking time help make America more prepared for emergencies.

As is the tradition, each week of National Preparedness Month has a designated theme:
  • Week 1 (August 28-September 3): Promote National Preparedness Month
  • Week 2 (September 4-10): Preparing Family and Friends
  • Week 3 (September 11-17): Preparing Through Service
  • Week 4 (September 18-24): Individual Preparedness
  • Week 5 (September 25-30): Lead-up to National PrepareAthon! Day

Additional information about each of these themes is available on, where you can also find social media content, 2016 NPM logo, graphics, and more to share with your friends and family.


Emergency Preparedness and Kidney Disease - Using KCER as a Resource
Dialysis and kidney transplant patients must take special precautions to ensure their health and safety during emergencies and disasters. The Kidney Community Emergency Response Coalition, or KCER, is an excellent resource for kidney patients for preparing for emergencies. Hosted by the American Kidney Fund, two leaders experienced in the end stage renal disease (ESRD) emergency preparedness field, Beverly Whittet and Peter Traub, will be speaking to increase knowledge about:
  • KCER's online platform
  • Ways to plan ahead to ensure dialysis services are available in emergency or disaster situations
  • The tools and resources available to patients with kidney failure and dialysis facilities relating to emergency preparedness.
Date: Tuesday, September 20, 2016
Time: 1:00 - 2:00 pm ET

For more information about the webinar, click here.

Achieving Health Equity
Improving health and health care worldwide requires a focus on equity - equity of access, treatments, and outcomes. Health equity is realized when each individual has a fair opportunity to achieve their full health potential.

Differences in access, treatment, and outcomes between individuals and across populations that are systemic, avoidable, predictable, and unjust are particularly problematic for quality improvers. These types of differences are often referred to as inequities or disparities. Inequities are the worst type of unwanted variation in a system - variation linked to the complicated history and reality of racism, classism, sexism, ableism, ageism, and other forms of oppression. Quality improvers have a role to play, and a set of tools to use, in health care systems and communities to remediate inequities.

Attached, please find the white paper, "Achieving Health Equity: A Guide for Heath Care Organizations," recently released by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI). The article highlights the business case for health equity, provides a framework to achieve health equity, and identifies how to measure health equity.

ESRD News and Alerts
FDA MedWatch:

The Experience of Care: Patients and Providers as Partners Webinar Series
The National Forum of ESRD Networks is hosting a 3-Part webinar series focusing on improving patient experience of care and addressing important topics such as: how to change the way we look at patient experience of care, how to use new information to improve the patient experience of care, and breaking down barriers to communication.
September 14, 2016 - 2:00 pm ET
The Patient Perspective: What is the experience of care? Are we asking the right questions?
October 19, 2016 - 2:00 pm ET
The Provider Perspective: What do we learn from experience of care surveys? Can we do better?
November 9, 2016 - 2:00 pm ET
Patient and Provider Engagement: Forging true partnerships and changing the culture.
Registration and more information available on the Forum's website.
Data Management

ESRD Quality Incentive Program (QIP) Payment Year 2017

Preview Period Extended

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is informing the End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Network Organizations (Networks) that the Payment Year (PY) 2017 Preview Period for the ESRD Quality Incentive Program (QIP) began on August 15, 2016 , and will conclude at 5:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time on September 30, 2016 . The Preview Period provides an important opportunity for each facility to review and pose questions about its ESRD QIP scores and any potential payment reductions that may result.

For those who missed the August 2, 2016 Medicare Learning Network Call, the resources presented as well as the recording are available here. Find out how to access and review your Preliminary Payment Year (PY) Performance Score Reports (PSRs).
Are You Doing Your PART?
PART verification for all patients should be completed by the end of each month - no later than the 5th business day of the following month. See page 34 of the CROWNWeb Data Management Guidelines for details.

For more information about CROWNWeb resources visit
NHSN Reporting Deadline Approaching
To meet the CMS ESRD QIP NHSN reporting requirements for Payment Year 2018, outpatient hemodialysis clinics must submit their second quarter 2016 Dialysis Event data collected from April 1, 2016 through June 30, 2016, by Friday, September 30, 2016. New or revised second quarter data entered into NHSN after September 30 will not be sent to CMS. Therefore, please be aware that any changes or corrections to second quarter 2016 data should be made prior to the reporting deadline.

CMS recommends using the following resources to review your data before the deadline.  These resources and others can be found on the Dialysis Event homepage:
Contact the NHSN Helpdesk (, subject line 'Dialysis') with any questions.

Have You Used the Network Data Knowledge Base and Customer Portal?
With the increase in data that must be submitted, as well as systems through which the data is collected, there are multiple ways in which you can reach the Network Data Support Team for help. 
*Please remember that you should NEVER include any patient-specific information such as Name, Date of Birth, Social Security Number, Medicare Claim Number, etc. The only patient identifier that can safely be communicated is the Unique Patient Identifier (UPI) from CROWNWeb.*
Upcoming Meeting & Events
Thursday, September 22, 2016 - Hartford Hospital Transplant Program 11 Annual Interdisciplinary Transplant Symposium, Sheraton Hartford South Hotel, 100 Capital Boulevard, Rocky Hill, CT.

September 23-25, 2016 - American Association of Kidney Patients (AAKP) 2016 National Patient Meeting in Nashville, Tennessee.
Wednesday, October 5, 2016 - NKF Fall 2016 CRNNE Conference, College of the Holy Cross, Worcester, MA.
Saturday, October 8, 2016- Donate Life CT is the official charity of the 2016 Eversource Hartford Marathon
Thursday, October 27, 2016 - 4th Annual ESRD New England Fall Meeting at the Mohegan Sun Conference Center, Uncasville, CT.
Wednesday, November 9, 2016 - Donate Life Connecticut 8th Annual Toast to Life, Yale Peabody Museum, New Haven, CT.

IPRO End-Stage Renal Disease Network of New England, the ESRD Organization for Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont, prepared this material under contract with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The contents presented do not necessarily reflect CMS policy. CMS Contract Number: HHSM-500-2016-00019C.