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Welcome to the June 13 issue of the Quality Insights Renal Network 4 e-newsletter. In this issue, we bring you information about CMS memorandums, the 15th Annual RSN Essay Contest, NHSN training opportunities and reporting deadlines, patient education features, ESRD events, resources and much more. We encourage you to  contact us with any questions, concerns or suggestions.  
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Network Role in Facilitating Access to Care
We will be providing a Network 4 Patient Education Sheet each month in 2017. These documents are also located on our website. Please provide all of your patients with this education sheet this month.   Also, we ask that you please encourage your facility's Patient  Representatives to pass out this educational information as well. 
CMSMemosESRD Saline draws and station cleaning memos released  
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently released two memos of guidance for ESRD facilities on cleaning the patient station and filing saline syringes at patient treatment station. 

Filling Saline Syringes at the Patient Treatment Station
Revised 06.06.17 ***Revised to Reflect a New Effective Date of July 2, 2017*** 
  • Preparation of Medications: ESRD facilities must follow aseptic technique when preparing and administering intravenous medications; including the filling of syringes with sterile saline for use during the dialysis procedure. 
  • Filling Saline Syringes at the Station: Pursuant to current recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), ESRD facilities may not fill syringes with saline from the single dose saline bag or IV tubing connected to the patient at the dialysis station. To comply with recommended safe injection practices, the facility may acquire pre-filled syringes or may prepare saline syringes for an individual patient in a clean area away from the patient treatment area. 
  • Memo: Filling Saline Syringes at the Patient Treatment Station
Cleaning the Patient Station
  • Cleaning the ESRD station between patients: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recommended that a dialysis station, in order to prevent cross contamination, be completely vacated by the previous patient before the ESRD staff may begin cleaning and disinfection of the station and set up for the next patient. 
  • Precaution: CMS reiterates that patients should not be moved from the dialysis station until they are clinically stable.
  • Memo: Cleaning the Patient Station

Additional Information

RSNEssayIndividuals invited to enter 15th annual RSN Essay Contest 
Renal Support Network (RSN) is encouraging people with chronic kidney disease (CKD) to enter its 15th Annual Patient Essay Contest. RSN is a nonprofit, patient-run organization that provides non-medical services to those affected by CKD. This year, the essay contest commemorates 15 years with the theme, "Describe a positive decision that you have made about your healthcare." All submissions must be written by someone who has been diagnosed with CKD. 

The essay contest inspires people with kidney disease to share their experience with others traveling the same road and looking for answers. Contest winners will receive cash prizes of $500 for first place, $300 for second place and $100 for third place. 

The submission deadline is August 10. Winners' will be announced on September 14. Winning essays will be featured in RSN's publication, Live & Give, and on For information about the contest, rules and read previous winning essays visit

DialysisEventTrainingdialysis Event Training Course Available
The Dialysis Event training course is now available on the Dialysis Event homepage. Every National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN) user must complete re-training annually by taking the online training course and re-reading the Dialysis Event Protocol. Before completing the course post-test, please follow these instructions to enter your contact information into the designated fields:
  • The First Name, Last Name, and the email address of the person completing the course. The email address entered must be the email address associated with the person's SAMS account. NHSN users can identify the email associated with their SAMS account by: 
    • A) Logging in to
    • B) Clicking "NHSN Reporting" and logging in to your facility 
    • C) Clicking on the username in top-right corner, and 
    • D) Viewing the email address under "My Info".
  • The facility's 5-digit NHSN OrgID can be found by: 
    • A) Logging in to 
    • B) Clicking "NHSN Reporting" and logging in to your facility 
    • C) Clicking on the username in the top-right corner, and 
    • D) Viewing the 5-digit ID.
  • The facility's ESRD Network number. The ESRD Network in which your facility resides can be found by clicking the map on this website
CMSReportingDeadlineCMS Reporting Deadline for NHSN Dialysis Event Surveillance is Coming Up on June 30
To meet the CMS ESRD QIP NHSN reporting requirements for Payment Year 2019, outpatient hemodialysis clinics must submit their first quarter 2017 Dialysis Event data collected from January 1, 2017 through March 31, 2017, by Friday, June 30, 2017. New or revised first quarter data entered into NHSN after June 30 will not be sent to CMS. Therefore, please be aware that any changes or corrections to first quarter 2017 data should be made prior to the reporting deadline.
We recommend 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.

CROWNWebMemoCROWNWeb Memorandum: Facility dashboard known issues and internet browser requirements
A CROWNWeb memorandum was recently issued about known issues and internet browser requirements for the Facility Dashboard. 
  • If a patient is admitted to multiple facilities, the 2746 megatab on the Facility Dashboard may be attributed to the incorrect facility in certain conditions. This known issue is being addressed, and the fix is anticipated to be available on Wednesday, June 14, 2017.
  • A system sync change was implemented on Thursday, June 8, 2017. Changes made in the CROWNWeb system may now take up to 15 minutes to sync to the Facility Dashboard.
  • The recommended Internet Browsers for the Facility Dashboard are Internet Explorer version 11, Google Chrome, and Mozilla Firefox. The Facility Dashboard may not fully populate if other Internet Browsers are in use.
For additional information or assistance, please contact the QualityNet Help Desk at or (866) 288-8912 Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. ET.

SummerCamps3CAn't wait for Summer? Take a Look at Upcoming ESRD Camps
Philadelphia Area
Central and Western Pennsylvania
American Kidney Fund 
The American Kidney Fund is offering a new online continuing education (CE) course titled Managing Hyperphosphatemia. The course is free and offers 1.00 CDR CE credit and 1.20 NANT CE credits. The goals of the course are to identify and understand challenges dietitians and other allied health professionals face in managing hyperphosphatemia in their patients and identify effective tools and strategies they can employ in their own practice. Learn more.  

ESRD Network 14 and the Advanced Renal Education Program (AREP)
ESRD Network 14, in collaboration with the Advanced Renal Education Program, are presenting a 1 hour interactive learning experience focusing on vascular access dialysis therapies with featured speaker Dr. Sean Kalloo, MD, MBA, Assistant Professor of Medicine at Columbia University Medical Center. This webinar will take place on Monday, June 26 from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. CDT.  will discuss important aspects of vascular access such as principles of patient evaluation, appropriate cannulation techniques, vascular access related complications and risk mitigation methods. Register today. Learning objectives include: 
  • Identify major types of dialysis vascular access
  • Explain the risk and benefits of each type of vascular access
  • List basic principles of patient evaluation
  • Describe appropriate cannulation techniques
  • Discuss vascular access related complications and risk mitigation methods
ESRD Network Coordinating Council (NCC)
The ESRD Network Coordinating Council (NCC) will present a webinar on June 20, 2017 designed for dialysis facility staff, medical directors, and all infectious disease healthcare staff, on Infection Prevention: Leadership, Interventions, Results. The webinar will examine the critical role that empowered nephrologists play in engaging and leading dialysis staff to continuously improve the safety of patients on dialysis. Join us to learn how the nephrology care team can develop and implement quality strategies and recognized prevention tools in the QAPI program to improve care provided to dialysis patients. Continuing education credit is available for nurses and PCTs.   Get complete details and registration information. Space is limited.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
The CDC has a new free continuing education opportunity focused on Environmental Services and Infection Prevention. Learn more and register

Network staff members L to R: Kou Kha-Moua, Chris Brown and Tricia Phulchand
NetworkStaffNetwork Staff Members Attend Day of Learning at Vascular Center: Opportunity for Contact Hours
Staff from ESRD Networks 3 and 4 recently attended a day of learning at a vascular access center as part of the Adventures in Access program. This new education program can give an inside look at the day-to-day operations of your local access center and help you earn free contact hours at the same time. You will visit a Lifeline Vascular Access managed center, learn how to spot access problems, review radiographic images, observe a live interventional procedure, and shadow a nurse during both pre- and post-procedure assessments. For more information, contact MaryBeth Lawson at or call (215) 887-1122.  
ESRDResourcesESRD resources 

Adult Immunization Word Search Puzzle and Answer Key
Quality Insights' Quality Innovation Network recently developed a fun and educational new resource. Download the word search puzzle and answer key today for yourself, patients, family members and staff.  
AKI in the Outpatient Dialysis Setting: Clinics, Staff Take a Deeper Dive into Treatment Approach
Check out this article from Nephrology News & Issues on a better approach to acute kidney injury (AKI). 
Looking for a Patient Support Group?
Sometimes it's helpful to talk about your journey to kidney health with peers that understand what you're going through. Check out our website periodically for information about local support groups near you, including upcoming meeting dates as they become available. 
Check out the ESRD NCC Information Exchange
The ESRD Network Coordinating Center (NCC) provides centralized coordination and support for the Medicare ESRD Network program. Each month, the ESRD NCC distributes an e-newsletter, known as the Information Exchange, that compiles the most important information from numerous ListServs and publications related to renal health. To sign up to receive this informative newsletter, please contact the ESRD NCC at or visit the ESRD NCC website

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King of Prussia, PA 19406 
(610) 265-2418 
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This bi-weekly e-newsletter will serve as our primary method of communicating important news and updates. We encourage you to visit our Web site for the most up-to-date information or to contact us with questions, comments or suggestions.
This material was prepared by Quality Insights Renal Network 4 under contract with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). The contents do not necessarily reflect CMS policy.

Publication No. ESRD4-060517