Because non-hospital vascular access centers (VACs) provide better outcomes and specialized care to ESRD patients, it is essential to maintain and improve patient access to these facilities. A recently published study in the Journal of Vascular Access studied 223,846 Medicare patients on dialysis over a 3-year period with matched cohorts and found significantly better quality and outcomes in the physician office setting. This peer-reviewed study demonstrated that patients treated in the office-based setting have:
- 4% lower annual mortality rates than HOPD-based care
- 38% fewer infections
- 13% fewer hospitalizations
DVAC supports Medicare policies that preserve access to care in non-hospital settings and prevent migration of patients to the hospital setting. When ESRD patients cannot receive care at non-hospital VACs, they have no other choice but to visit hospitals. At hospitals, it often is not possible to receive rapid and effective treatment due to lengthy wait times, and the use of central line catheters becomes more common. Ultimately, this puts ESRD patients at greater risk of hospitalization, infection, and compromised dialysis treatments.
For more information about DVAC’s policy priorities, please click here.