Dr. Beth Piraino, NKF President
As a follow-up to our post End of Life Decisions for Dialysis Patients: Update on Proposed Medicare Rule, we are pleased to report that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) have affirmed that dialysis patients who enter hospice for a terminal illness unrelated to their kidney failure may continue to receive dialysis services paid for under Medicare Part B. This is a great relief for patients and their families who have been diagnosed with a terminal illness and wish to enter hospice care. End of life decisions are not easy for anyone and hospice care can provide patients with palliative care and the psychosocial support necessary to help patients and families through this difficult time. The National Kidney Foundation is pleased that CMS continues to recognize the need for patients to have continued access to dialysis when entering hospice care for an unrelated condition.