Letter to Senate Finance Committee members urging them to include the provisions of the Kidney Care Quality and Improvement Act of 2005 in the budget reconciliation package

October 24, 2005

The Honorable                     *
United States Senate
Washington, DC 20510

Dear Senator*:

The American Nephrology Nurses’ Association (ANNA), representing over 12,000 registered nurses, is an active organizational member of the Kidney Care Partners’ alliance. We strongly support the provisions of the Kidney Care Quality and Improvement Act of 2005 (S 635), and urge that the Senate Finance Committee include it in the budget reconciliation package currently being negotiated.

The annual payment update for the dialysis composite rate, which includes the nursing staff salaries, would allow the dialysis provider segment to be competitive with other parts of the general provider community. Currently, there are severe nursing staff shortages in the field of dialysis because salaries cannot be competitive. Including a provision for an annual payment update for the dialysis composite rate in the budget reconciliation would help alleviate that problem.

We strongly urge you to support these provisions of the Kidney Care Quality and Improvement Act (S 635). Thank you.

Sincerely yours,

Suzann VanBuskirk, BSN, RN, CNN
President

cc:  ANNA Board of Directors

*Letter was sent to each member of the Senate Finance Committee:
Charles Grassley (R-IA)
Orrin G. Hatch (R-UT)
Trent Lott (R-MS)
Olympia Snowe (R-ME)
Jon Kyl (R-AZ)
Craig Thomas (R-WY)
Rick Santorum (R-PA)
Bill Frist (R-TN)
Gordon Smith (R-OR)
Jim Bunning (R-KY)
Mike Crapo (R-ID)
Max Baucus (D-MT)
John D. Rockefeller IV (D-WV)
Kent Conrad (D-ND)
Jeff Bingaman (D-NM)
John Kerry (D-MA)
Blanche Lincoln (D-AR)
Ron Wyden (D-OR)
Charles Schumer (D-NV)
James Jeffords (I-VT)