From improving the availability of all treatment options to the development of home therapy and telemedicine, there are many challenges that need to be addressed by the end of the decade to better the lives of chronic kidney disease patients.
The initiative called “decade of the kidney” running from 2020 to 2030 was first launched by the American kidney patient federation (AAKP) and recently adopted by European health stakeholders.
Taking as an example the extraordinary efforts put in place with cancer over the last 30 years, the campaign aims at increasing awareness of kidney disease.
In this special report, EURACTIV explores the next challenges in this decade of the kidney, focusing on research, training of both patients and medical professionals, and availability of treatments in all European countries.
With incidences of kidney disease predicted to soar in the next decade, health stakeholders are calling for more efforts to ensure patient autonomy and invest in training for both practitioners and patients.
Not many substantial breakthroughs have been experienced in the field of chronic kidney disease (CKD) treatment since the mass diffusion of dialysis units in the '70s. Technological progress is growing exponentially though, opening up new possibilities for bettering patients' lives.
While inequalities across the EU when it comes to kidney disease treatments are well-known by the European Commission, the ball is ultimately in member states' courts when it comes to expanding access, according to health stakeholders.
Portable artificial kidney is perceived as the next big thing in the field of home treatment that could stop dialysis being a full-time job for patients, but barriers to its rollout persist.