Vijayan Joins the Challenge: NTDS Commitment to Improve Dialysis Care

An ambitious – and exciting – initiative that will challenge the dialysis community to rethink how infections are detected, reported, and managed is being launched by a collaboration between the ASN and the CDC. Anitha Vijayan, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of Nephrology, is co-chair of one of the work groups of the Nephrologists Transforming Dialysis Safety Project (NTDS) that will strive to eliminate infections in dialysis facilities within three years.

“Our goal is zero infections in the dialysis units,” says Dr. Vijayan.

ntds1According to the 2014 NIDDK Annual Data Report of CKD and ESRD in the US, 10% of patients with ESRD died of infection in 2012, and this percentage is not improving. The NTDS was designed to tackle this problem. The ASN’s initiative is made possible by a three-year grant awarded by the CDC and is led by Alan S. Kliger, MD and Susan A. Stark.

The NTDS Project committee consists of 18 nephrology community experts and 4 CDC representatives and is divided into four working groups.

State and Federal HAI Programs; Anitha Vijayan, MD and Eugene Livar, MD, Co-Chairs
Current and Emerging Threats; Alp Ikizler, MD and John Boyce, MD, Co-Chairs
Quality, Assessment, Improvement and Education; Leslie Wong, MD, Chair
Training Programs; Sharon Adler, MD, Chair

The NTDS initiative will: develop a webinar series; create an educational module on infection prevention for fellowship programs; use social media, surveys and focus groups to engage ASN’s members; initiate a contest to develop tools to detect, diagnose and treat infections in dialysis units; reach out to state public health and nephrologists to increase collaboration and promote awareness of reportable infectious diseases and participation on state HAI advisory committees; include educational sessions at ASN Kidney Week conferences.

The NTDS program staff and volunteers hosted a Town Hall meeting during Kidney Week 2016 in Chicago, IL. Half of the meeting was reserved for questions and comments from the audience. A review of the meeting and specific ideas proposed by the audience and NTDS panel can be found in the latest issue of Nephrology News & Issues.