Kidney disease escalating locally/nationally with diabetes health crisis

March is National Kidney Month. In Illinois, 1 in 9 residents are battling kidney disease. Kidney failure is the ninth-leading cause of death in Illinois and nationally. The highest-risk communities for kidney disease are African-Americans and Latinos, which make up 28 percent of the state’s total population and nearly 65 percent of Chicago’s population. The leading causes of kidney disease are unmanaged diabetes and hypertension.

NKFI’s statewide prevention campaign has visited more than100 communities across Illinois conducting free community screenings. During visits, NKFI’s prevention team has screened more than 4,100 people and found that 79 percent of participants tested in the abnormal range for one or more tests.

NKFI and subject matter experts on kidney disease are available to discuss prevention, access to programs and education.

Regional contacts

Dr. Charles Sweeney, nephrologists and member of NKFI’s Medical Advisory Board. Phone: 815-968-2400; email:

Willa Lang, NKFI CEO. Phone: 312-321-1500, e-mail

Kidney disease trends

Kidney failure is increasing by 8-10 percent annually (for a total of $20 billion to national health budget). If trends continue, we will be overcome by a public health crisis of chronic kidney disease far beyond our dialysis capacity, and even further beyond the state and federal government’s ability to pay.

For more information about the KidneyMobile and to view images and the current schedule, visit

from the March 21-28, 2007, issue

Enjoy The Rock River Times? Help spread the word!