Kidney Care Partners' Quality Initiatives

ESRD Is Unique within the Medicare Community 

The Medicare ESRD Program is unique because it is the only Medicare program that cares for patients at the onset of their disease; dialysis providers were the first Medicare providers to be paid under a prospective payment system; and dialysis facilities have consistently reported quality data to CMS and demonstrated consistent improvement in the quality of the care they provide to patients.


KCP is Committed to Advancing Quality Care

Since it’s founding, KCP has been proactive in its approach to quality:

  • KCP convened the Kidney Care Quality Alliance from 2004-2009 to develop, specify, and test performance measures, several of which received endorsement by the National Quality Forum.  


  • From 2010-2012, KCP undertook a national, voluntary goals initiative with a goal to reduce first-year mortality.  During the formal PEAK Campaign period, first year mortality fell by 13.6% as of December 31, 2012.  The first-year mortality rate has continued to decline, with KCP’s data partners at Brown University finding a 14.6% reduction as of June 2013.  


  • KCP felt kidney care quality would benefit from a strategic blueprint that identified the essential areas for improvement, and in March 2014, KCP released its report A Strategic Blueprint for Advancing Kidney Care Quality, which identifies a comprehensive, yet parsimonious, core set of strategic recommendations that can significantly improve kidney care quality and improve survival, decrease hospitalizations, improve quality of life, and improve patient experience with care. 


  • In January 2014, KCP approved the re-constitution of KCQA and in May 2014 adopted KCQA-Phase 2 Guiding Principles and Process.  KCQA will build on the Blueprint by prioritizing the domains for the purpose of measure development, after which KCQA will develop, specify, and test 1-2 related measures in an initial domain.


The Kidney Care Quality Alliance (KCQA), Phase II

During 2014, KCQA will reconvene to reach consensus on the specifications for 1-2 related measures in one measurement domain.  The KCQA Steering Committee will guide this work:

Edward Jones, MD, Co-Chair—Renal Physicians Association

Allen Nissenson, MD , Co-Chair—DaVita

Akhtar Ashfaq, MD—Amgen

Donna Bednarski, RN, MSN—American Nephrology Nurses Association

Barbara Fivush, MD—American Society of Pediatric Nephrology

Raymond Hakim, MD, PhD—American Society of Nephrology

Eduardo Lacson, Jr., MD, MPH—Fresenius Medical Care North America

Chris Lovell, RN, MSN—Dialysis Clinics, Inc.

Thomas Manley, RN, BSN—National Kidney Foundation

Gail Wick, MHSA, BSN, RN—American Kidney Fund

Shari M. Ling, MD (Liaison Member)—Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services

As during Phase I, KCQA is committed to transparency and will provide additional information as the work of Phase II develops.


Draft Specifications for Comment

KCQA seeks comment on its proposed specifications in advance of measure testing. Comments should be forwarded to by November 28 to lmcgon [at] msn [dot] com.


All-KCQA Webinar/Conference Call, November 7

KCQA held an All-KCQA-Phase 2 webinar/conference call on November 7, 12-1 pm ET.  The meeting materials and agenda may be accessed here


All-KCQA Webinar/Conference Call, October 16

KCQA held an All-KCQA-Phase 2 webinar/conference call on October 16, 1-2 pm ET.  The meeting materials and agenda may be accessed here


All-KCQA Webinar/Conference Call, June 30

KCQA held an All-KCQA-Phase 2 webinar/conference call on June 30, 5-6 pm ET. The meeting materials and agenda may be accessed here.

All-KCQA Webinar/Conference Call, May 6

KCQA held its initial Phase 2 webinar/conference call on May 6, 2-3 pm ET. The meeting materials and agenda may be accessed hereas well as a summary of the call.


KCQA Measure Feasibility/Testing Workgroup

The KCQA Steering Committee has appointed a 15-member Measure Feasibility/Testing Workgroup to identify 4-5 measure concepts in the area of Fluid Management, which will ultimately result in KCQA testing 1-2 related measures.  The Workgroup is convening weekly (and in some cases twice weekly).  Conference calls are open to KCQA members and the public; interested parties may contact Lisa McGonigal, MD, MPH at lmcgon[at] for dial-in information.


Back to Top