Month: May 2018

CMS Introduces the ESRD QIP Listserv on QualityNet

Effective at the end of April 2018, CMS will distribute program updates and other important communications exclusively via the End-Stage Renal Disease Quality Incentive Program (ESRD QIP) listserv. This listserv will replace current email blasts from the ESRD QIP mailbox.

Signing up is easy! Simply go here to create your ESRD QIP listserv account by selecting the option for the ESRD QIP. CMS will use the online listserv to distribute communications about changes to ESRD QIP policy and process to the ESRD QIP stakeholder community. You will need to create a user account to receive future communications from the listserv.

If you have any additional questions or concerns, please contact the ESRD QIP team using the ESRD QIP Q&A Tool.

Offering Support for Patients Beyond the Dialysis Center

When starting dialysis, patients are often overwhelmed with the adjustment to their new lifestyle. Navigating end stage renal disease, especially for new patients, can become frustrating, and sometimes can lead to patients feeling defeated by their chronic illness. Additionally, patients experience feelings of loneliness or isolation.

According to the American Association of Kidney Patients (AAKP), becoming involved in a support or adjustment group offers patients emotional support, reduces the feelings associated with loneliness, and provides a safe and secure platform to discuss feelings and emotions commonly associated with the diagnosis of renal failure. A patient making the decision to attend a support or adjustment groups signifies the first step towards acceptance and understanding of their diagnosis.

Initiating, implementing, and sustaining a support group can have its challenges. AAKP offers the Community Patient Support Group Guidebook. The resource was created to assist patients, family and caregivers, and dialysis providers with starting patient support or adjustment group in your service area. The AAKP website offers several ideas for session topics and patient education materials. Visit for additional information or call (800)749-AAKP.

Shared Decision Making: The Pinnacle of Patient-Centered Care

In 1988, researchers from the Harvard Medical School, on behalf of the Pickler Institute, developed the model known as the Eight Dimensions of Patient-Centered Care. The model challenges clinicians to cultivate a better understanding of a patient’s illness and address their needs. Secondary to knowledge gain, patients are viewed as equals to clinicians when making decisions about their healthcare.

A component of patient-centered care includes the concept of shared decision making or a process where patients work alongside their clinicians to make decisions about their treatments and care plans. Clinical evidence is reviewed to weigh the risks and outcomes associated with the decisions keeping a focus on the patient’s preferences and values. Benefits that come from patients engaging in the shared decision process include understanding their health along with the pros and cons of different options, being better prepared to collaborate with their healthcare team, and most importantly they are more likely to follow through on their decisions. For more information and tools on shared decision making, visit the New England Journal of Medicine at and the National Learning Consortium at

NCC QIA LAN Information and Resources

All facilities are invited to participate in the National Coordinating Center (NCC) Learning & Action Networks (LANs) to support Quality Improvement Activities (QIA). LANs provide a forum for bringing together healthcare professionals, patients, and other stakeholders around an evidence-based agenda to achieve rapid-cycle, wide-scale improvement.

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