top of page

Underserved Communities

Since 2006, specialties like dialysis and others have had their funding cut by 20-40% in the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS). These cuts have forced many vascular access centers to close their doors or reduce services, forcing many patients to face new barriers to the care they need. 

In underserved communities these barriers are unfortunately even higher. As health inequities continue to be exacerbated, entire communities and their patients are being cut off from the most effective and safe vascular access care. 

At DVAC, we advocate for a system where the quality of care a patient receives should not depend on their background or zip code. 

Health Inequities for Dialysis Patients - The Data

There is no shortage in data to showcase this inequity. 

Chronic Kidney Disease 
  • In the United States, approximately 37 million adults, or 15% of the population, have a chronic kidney disease. 

  • Chronic Kidney disease is slightly more common in women (14%) than men (12%).

  • Chronic Kidney disease is more common in non-Hispanic Black adults (20%) than in non-Hispanic Asian adults (14%) or non-Hispanic White adults (12%).

  • About 14% of Hispanic adults have Chronic Kidney disease.

End-stage renal disease (ESRD) 

Access to Care 


  • Black or African American patients are less likely than patients of other racial groups to receive any kidney-related care before they reach end-stage renal disease.

  • People of color who have chronic kidney disease and are not yet on dialysis are nearly four times more likely to progress to end-stage renal disease than white patients.



  • Black females are five times more likely to get a catheter for dialysis and much less likely to start hemodialysis with an arteriovenous fistula than white patients — despite being younger and having fewer comorbidities.

Patient Outcomes 


  • A 2023 report from the CDC  found that patients on dialysis were 100 times more likely to experience staph bloodstream infections, a leading cause of death for dialysis patients — with Hispanic patients experiencing an astounding 40% higher infection rate than non-hispanic white patients.

bottom of page