End stage renal disease (ESRD) is irreversible kidney disease which requires treatment with an artificial kidney (dialysis) or a kidney transplant for a person to maintain life and health. In 1972, legislation was passed to extend Medicare coverage to virtually all people with ESRD. Network 15 is one of 18 Networks under contract with CMS to oversee the ESRD program. Network responsibilities include:
- Assuring the effective and efficient administration of benefits
- Improving quality of care for ESRD patients
- Collecting data to measure quality of care
- Providing assistance to ESRD patients and providers
- Evaluating and resolving patient grievances
Network 15 covers six states: Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming. There are over 300 dialysis and 14 transplant facilities within Network 15. These facilities serve over 20,000 dialysis and 1,000 transplant patients each year.
Network 15 Goals
In accordance with the legislative mandate for the ESRD Network Program; to assist CMS in meeting Agency goals (e.g., ensuring the right care for every person every time); and in keeping with sound medical practice, the strategic goals of the ESRD Network Program are to:
- Improve the quality and safety of dialysis related services provided for individuals with ESRD.
- Improve the independence, quality of life, and rehabilitation (to the extent possible) of individuals with ESRD through transplantation, use of self-care modalities (e.g., peritoneal dialysis, home hemodialysis), in-center self-care, as medically appropriate, through the end of life.
- Improve patient perception of care and experience of care, and resolve patient's complaints and grievances.
- Improve the quality and safety of care by fostering the full engagement of patients, families, and caregivers in the design, delivery, and evaluation of care.
- Improve collaboration with providers to ensure achievement of the goals through the most efficient and effective means possible, with recognition of the differences among providers (e.g., independent, hospital-based, member of a group, affiliate of an organization, etc.) and the associated possibilities/capabilities.
- Improve the collection, reliability, timeliness, and use of data to measure processes of care and outcomes; maintain Patient Registry; and to support the ESRD Network Program.
Under the direction of CMS, the End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Network Program consists of a national network of 18 ESRD Networks, responsible for each U.S. state, territory, and the District of Columbia. ESRD Networks service geographic areas based on the number and concentration of ESRD beneficiaries.View Resource
If you have a concern about the care being provided to you or family member in a dialysis clinic, you may call the Network at any time. However, you are encouraged to speak to the clinic manager, charge nurse, or social worker first. This resource will provide you with more information about the Network grievance process, including how to file a grievance.View Resource
ESRD Network 15 is looking for patients to help improve the quality of care for ESRD patients by volunteering as a Patient Subject Matter Expert (SME) on our Patient Advisory Committee (PAC).View Resource
Network 15 is looking for administrators, nephrologists, vascular surgeons, transplant surgeons, nephrology nurses, transplant nurses, social workers, registered dietitians, and patient care technicians from ESRD Network facilities that are committed to improving the quality and experience of care for ESRD patients.View Resource
This guide demystifies the role of being a subject matter expert (SME) for patients and care partners.View Resource
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