Today kicks off DaVita’s Health Tour, starting in Washington, D.C. with additional events starting in California later this week.
From now through late November, two mobile health clinics will traverse seven states and approximately 50 communities to provide kidney health education and free health screenings to assess participants’ risk for kidney disease. In addition to Washington, D.C. and California, the tour will stop in Colorado, Georgia, Michigan, North Carolina, and Washington.
Often, kidney disease can be silent: Many people do not experience any symptoms as their kidney function declines. This might be accredited to the kidney’s ability to efficiently do its job of filtering blood of waste and excess fluid, even as function declines.
In each stop along the event route, DaVita will welcome individuals to receive a quick, free health screening that will assess health factors associated with high risk of kidney disease, including diabetes, hypertension, obesity, family history and ethnicity. People can expect a simple finger-prick glucose test, blood pressure check, measurement of weight as well as height and waist, and a conversation about health history.
Participants can also opt for a blood draw that will provide more insight into their current kidney function. This voluntary addition to the free screening can help people not only start thinking about their kidney health, but go one step further in better understanding whether they need to have a conversation with their doctors.
Each person who receives a screening will also have a personal and confidential review of their results and receive more information on what they might be able to do next to manage their kidney health depending on their needs.
“Regular screenings are vital to detecting chronic kidney disease early,” Dr. Jeff Giullian, chief medical officer for DaVita, says. “By offering free screenings on the DaVita Health Tour, we’re connecting with people who may not regularly think about their kidney health or regularly get health check-ins with their doctors.”
Events will also offer opportunities for people not interested in a free screening to start thinking about their kidney health:
- One-pagers that provide conversation-starters with primary care providers
- Information about registering for and attending a Kidney Smart® class
- Games to help test and brush up on kidney health knowledge
More About Kidney Disease Risks
An estimated 37 million adults in the U.S. have kidney disease — that’s roughly one in seven people across the country. However, approximately 90% of people who have kidney disease don’t know it, putting them at risk of kidney failure, in which they would need a kidney transplant or dialysis to sustain life.
Understanding key risk factors for kidney disease can help build awareness and action.
Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney disease: Diabetes is nearly three times as common among people with CKD as it is for people who do not have kidney disease. And, more than half of people living with kidney failure also have diabetes.
However, there are other risk factors people can keep in mind and will be a part of the DaVita Health Tour screenings:
- Hypertension is the second-leading cause of kidney disease, and it affects nearly one in two Americans.
- Obesity can increase risk of kidney disease in addition to creating higher risk for the leading causes of kidney disease (diabetes and hypertension).
- Black Americans and Hispanic or Latino Americans are also at a higher risk of developing kidney disease. In fact, Black Americans are three times as likely to experience kidney disease as white Americans. Minority populations are also more likely to experience conditions like diabetes and hypertension that increase their risk for kidney disease.
Dr. Giullian adds:
“Our no-cost health screenings in communities across the country underscores DaVita’s commitment to reducing the global burden of kidney failure.”
To learn more and find information about specific tour stops, visit DaVita.com/HealthTour.