This year, as the coronavirus pandemic stretches on, legislatures across the country have had to adjust to working remotely - bringing a new set of challenges and opportunities to the legislative process. For the Northwest Kidney Council however, it is business as usual as we work with stakeholders in Oregon & Washington to support bills that will improve the lives of kidney disease patients in the Northwest. This World Kidney Day we encourage you to get involved by contacting your legislators in support of these bills:
Oregon’s Chronic Kidney Disease Prevention and Education Task Force
HB 2421 would establish the Oregon Kidney Disease Prevention and Education Task Force, to help educate Oregonians on kidney disease and ways it can be prevented. The task force will design an ongoing public information campaign about kidney disease that includes health education workshops and seminars, research, preventive screening and social media, television and radio advertising leading to healthier behaviors and early detection. The task force would also specifically focus on promoting health equity and reducing the burden of kidney disease statewide. The bill is currently waiting to be scheduled for a hearing with the House Committee on Health Care.
With your support, we can encourage legislators to schedule a hearing and pass this bill. The best way is by contacting them directly. To find who represents you, check here: https://www.oregonlegislature.gov/FindYourLegislator/leg-districts.html. Feel free to use the sample language below or come up with a message of your own.
My name is ______ and I am writing to ask you to support HB 2421, which would establish the Oregon Kidney Disease Prevention and Education Task Force. This important bill will help provide education to Oregonians about Chronic Kidney Disease, which is the fastest growing non-contagious disease in the country. Prevention measures supported in this bill will help save lives and a focus on health equity will help reduce racial disparities. Please support HB 2421!
Washington’s Living Donor Protection Act
SB 5003, the Living Donor Protection Act was recently passed in the Senate with unanimous support and is now heading to the House for consideration. This bill will provide protection to living organ donors from discriminatory practices by insurers, making it more likely people will feel safe donating an organ. Living organ donation not only decreases the time individuals wait for a transplant, living organs also tend to survive longer, and transplant recipients experience fewer complications.
To show your support for the bill reach out to your representative and let them know this is an important piece of legislation. To find who represents you, look here: https://app.leg.wa.gov/DistrictFinder/. Feel free to use the sample language below, or come up with a message of your own.
My name is _____ and I am writing to ask you to support SB 5003, which recently passed the Senate unanimously. This bill would provide protections for living organ donors from discriminatory practices by insurers. Living donors provide much needed living kidneys to patients with end stage renal disease (ESRD) that survive longer and have fewer complications. This important legislation will make it easier for organ donors in Washington to make these lifesaving donations.