Life with kidney failure can be very challenging for patients and their families. It is vital that all necessary support is in place for everyone with kidney disease and more is done to prevent or delay the onset of this life changing condition.
Ahead of the 12 December general election, Kidney Care UK are asking all those standing for parliament to commit to improving kidney care.
We are seeking pledges that the next Government will:
- Ensure the necessary resources are in place to support the implementation of the Organ Donation (Deemed Consent) Act 2019 in England, set to come into force in 2020.
- Increase prevention efforts and early intervention by ensuring everyone at risk of CKD receives an annual check and high-quality information about the condition.
- Guarantee that patients have timely access to specialist renal dieticians, psychologists and social workers, in addition to specialist medical teams, to meet the range of needs experienced by people living with this complex and serious condition.
- End inconsistent access to prescriptions charge exemptions and benefits so that all patients can get the support they need in a fair and simple way.
Questions for candidates
We want all election candidates to understand the impact of kidney disease and why action is vital to prevent or delay onset of the disease and ensure people living with CKD get access to the support they need. We have sent a briefing to all political parties and you may like to talk to candidates about CKD and ask them to commit to action on CKD. Suggested questions include:
- There are 3 million people in the UK with chronic kidney disease. How will you and your party ensure the public know more about kidney disease? What will you and your party do to make sure Doctors in our community are testing people who are at high risk, such as those with diabetes or high blood pressure, so they can do more to look after their kidneys?
- The law is changing next year, so in England and Scotland we are moving to an opt-out consent system for organ donation unless a person wishes to opt out. What will you do to ensure the public learn more about organ donation and talk about it with their families and how will you ensure that our hospitals have enough capacity to ensure donations and transplants can take place?
- People with kidney disease have to take multiple medicines every day. Do you think people with long term conditions like kidney disease should have to pay prescription charges for the medicines that are keeping them alive? Will you commit to introducing a fairer system?
- Kidney disease can be a very challenging condition to live with. As well as physical health symptoms like pain and exhaustion, a lot of people develop depression and it can be difficult to cope with everyday life. What will you and your party do to make sure local people with kidney disease can access all of the doctors, nurses, social workers, psychologists and other specialists to help them manage their condition?
- Many people have their application for the benefits to which they are entitled turned down because the assessors do not understand kidney disease. Over 95% of the benefit appeals Kidney Care UK support are successful. What will you do to improve the benefits system so it is fairer and eligible people do not have to go through the appeals process to get the support they are entitled to?
Asking candidates questions via Social Media
We have prepared a number of image assets you can use to ask the above questions to your local candidates. Simply download the image for whichever of the questions you'd like to ask and attach them to a Tweet to your candidate with the hashtags: #GE19 #CommitToKidneyCare
How can I vote?
Vote in person
You vote in person at a polling station. There is more information about voting in person on the government website.
Election day, Thursday 12 December, may fall on a day when you are feeling unwell, have a dialysis session or cannot get to the polling station for another reason. You might like to register for postal voting so that you do not have to go to the polling station in person.
The deadline for registering for postal votes is Tuesday 26 November 2019 in England, Scotland and Wales, or Thursday 21 November in Northern Ireland. Further information about postal votes on the government website.
How do I find out who are the candidates in my constituency?
Final lists will be available on the Electoral Commission website - you just need to enter your postcode.
You can find information on how many people are waiting for a transplant in your local constituency on the NHS Blood and Transplant website, as well as the number of people on the NHS Organ Donor Register.
If you have any questions? Please write to us at email@example.com