Donor support has helped The Kidney Foundation build capacity for world-class research
Innovations like improved portable dialysis machines, 3D printing technology, ways to keep donor kidneys healthy outside the body before a transplant, and stem cell research hold the promise of potential new treatment options for Canadians with kidney disease.
“While amazing discoveries are happening that will improve outcomes, there exists an urgent need to do more to enhance the quality of life for those impacted by kidney disease,” says Elizabeth Myles, national executive director, The Kidney Foundation of Canada.
“We have to find better and more permanent solutions for people with kidney disease and kidney failure, especially in light of the significant impact on individuals and the cost to the health system.”
The Kidney Foundation supports research focused on improving outcomes for people living with kidney disease – with the aspiration to find a cure, explains Ms. Myles. “As a pivotal funder of kidney research in Canada, our investments are made possible by generous individual and corporate donors. As the prevalence of kidney disease is on the rise, the need to fund innovative research is greater than ever.”
Donor support has helped to build capacity for world-class kidney research, and the Foundation leverages additional research funding available from institutional partners to achieve an even greater impact for those living with kidney disease; a recent example of this is a $1-million funding commitment towards diabetic kidney research.
National executive director, The Kidney Foundation of Canada
“Research can provide data on trends and issues, giving us valuable information to advocate for systems change to improve kidney care through public policy,” she says. “Our advocacy voice also helps us educate Canadians about the risks of kidney disease.”
Greater awareness about kidney disease – and its link to other chronic conditions, including diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease – can help to improve outcomes, believes Ms. Myles, who adds that people on dialysis currently have a five-year survival rate of 41 per cent, on average, a worse prognosis than many types of cancer.
“We prioritize patient-oriented research, where people with lived experience are part of the process every step of the way, from determining research priorities and study design to peer review and knowledge translation,” she says.
Beyond advocacy and research, The Kidney Foundation also offers education and support with the dual goal of improving the lives of people with kidney disease as well as help to prevent the disease.
“We would like to see a world free of kidney disease, where people know about the important role of the kidneys and how to maintain kidney health,” says Ms. Myles.
More information: kidney.ca
Advertising feature produced by Randall Anthony Communications with The Association of Fundraising Professionals Canada. The Globe’s editorial department was not involved.