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CKD UK pilot screening scheme

Kidney Research UK has announced that a pilot screening study to detect chronic kidney disease is to be launched this year

Kidney Research UK has announced that a pilot screening study to detect chronic kidney disease (CKD) is to be launched this year.

Supported by educational grants from Swiss based pharma company Roche will help fund the screening programme to help in the early detection of CKD.

Roche said: "Roche is delighted to have co-sponsored the Kidney Research UK chronic kidney disease screening programme pilot.

"Early detection of this debilitating disease could potentially have a major impact on outcomes for CKD patients, allowing its progression to be slowed, placing a lower burden on dialysis and transplant services in the UK."

The pilot scheme will be run in Oldham, Birmingham, Leicester, and London and it is hoped that over 2,000 people will be screened, with the aim of a national roll-out should it prove successful.

Dr Evan Harris MP, co-chair of the all party parliamentary kidney group, said: "This important study could pave the way for improved screening of chronic kidney disease and save many lives in the long term."

"If this disease is not identified early, patients can suffer kidney failure requiring dialysis or organ transplant," he explained.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown stated in January 2008 the Government's intention to increase measures to prevent and detect early signs of CKD.

According to Dr Donal O'Donoghue, national clinical director of kidney care, dialysis for CKD patients cost the NHS and the taxpayer almost £1000m every year.

Only 3.7 percent of the total number adults in the UK afflicted in the UK are eventually diagnosed with CKD, despite the fact that 10 per cent of the general population have some form of kidney damage.

Dr O'Donoghue said: "There can be no argument that this is the right thing to do for the patient and the NHS."

"With early detection and prevention targeting high-risk groups, we can identify people with CKD before they reach a critical stage," he added.

The screening study will target groups that are more susceptible to the risk of CKD such as people with diabetes and hypertension as well members of the African Caribbean and Asian communities.

In the US, the National Kidney Foundation launched the Kidney Early Evaluation Programme (KEEP) that screened over 100,000 people.

13th March 2008

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