Study: Limited Global Availability of Nutrition-Related Care for Patients with Kidney Disease

A survey was administered electronically to key kidney care stakeholders in 182 International Society of Nephrology (ISN)-affiliated countries, with 88% responding and 97% answering the survey items related to kidney nutrition care.

New research published in CJASN has found that there are significant gaps in care related to the importance of nutrition for maintaining kidney health in many countries.

Angela Yee-Moon Wang, MD, PhD, and colleagues examined 2 aspects of kidney nutrition care included in the Atlas: current global availability, capacity, and cost of kidney nutrition care services; and communication between dietitians and nephrologists in the delivery of kidney nutrition care. A survey was administered electronically to key kidney care stakeholders in 182 International Society of Nephrology (ISN)-affiliated countries, with 88% responding and 97% answering the survey items related to kidney nutrition care.

Highlights of the survey responses included:

  • Only 48% of the 155 countries have dietitians or kidney dietitians to provide kidney nutrition care.
  • Dietary counseling provided by a person trained in nutrition is generally not available in 65% of low/lower-middle income countries and “never” available in 23% of low-income countries.
  • Forty-one percent of the countries do not provide formal assessment of nutrition status for kidney nutrition care.
  • The availability of oral nutrition supplements varies globally and are mostly not freely available in low/lower-middle income countries for both inpatient and outpatient settings.
  • Dietitians and nephrologists only communicate “sometimes” on kidney nutrition care in more than 60% of countries globally.

“In the long term, the definitive solution to the foregoing problem is to train and provide salary support for adequate numbers of qualified dietitians who have undergone specialized training in kidney nutrition to implement nutrition intervention across the spectrum of kidney disease,” Wang said in the press release. “We hope this report will be an important advocacy tool to promote governmental prioritization and allocation of resources and manpower for this essential component in kidney care worldwide, especially in lower income countries.”

REFERENCE

Study reveals limited global availability of nutrition-related care for patients with kidney disease. December 28, 2021. Accessed January 4, 2022. EurekAlert! https://www.eurekalert.org/news-releases/938916