AKF to train 400 TMF Diabetes Health Educators as Kidney Health Coaches

Rockville, Maryland

Rockville, Maryland, Jan. 31, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) --

In a vital initiative to educate people with diabetes and prediabetes about their risks for kidney disease, the American Kidney Fund (AKF) and TMF Health Quality Institute today announced a two-year partnership that will incorporate chronic kidney disease (CKD) education into TMF’s diabetes education curriculum.


Four hundred TMF diabetes health educators in Arkansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Texas and Puerto Rico will be trained on CKD screening and treatment using AKF training materials, and class participants will be provided with educational materials to improve CKD awareness and the importance of CKD screening. Many of those educators will be certified as Kidney Health Coaches when they choose training through AKF’s new Kidney Health Coach™ training program.


This initiative is a component of TMF’s special innovation project for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to promote and increase timely screening, early diagnosis and treatment of chronic kidney disease.


The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that more than 100 million U.S. adults are living with diabetes or prediabetes, and diabetes is the leading cause of kidney disease and kidney failure. In addition, the CDC estimates that of the 30 million Americans living with kidney disease, 96 percent of those with mild or early kidney disease are unaware of it, and 48 percent of those with severely reduced kidney function, but not on dialysis, do not know they have CKD.


“Our partnership with the American Kidney Fund aligns two of our ongoing projects, one of which educates people with diabetes and/or hypertension in life-improving self-management skills and the other on improving CKD screening,” said Thomas Manley, president and chief executive officer of TMF Health Quality Institute. “Our diabetes health educators will work to increase patients’ understanding of CKD as a complication of diabetes.”


LaVarne A. Burton, AKF president and chief executive officer, said, “The staggering number of Americans who have kidney disease but don’t know it should be a clarion call to action for public health agencies and the entire health care community. When found early, chronic kidney disease can usually be slowed down or its progress stopped altogether, avoiding the progression to kidney failure. Our partnership with TMF will make a huge difference to some of the people most at risk for kidney disease.”


The Kidney Health Coach training course presents information about preventing, managing and treating kidney disease, as well as living a healthy lifestyle. It aims to address the most common and often modifiable risk factors for kidney disease: uncontrolled diabetes and high blood pressure. The course is free and open to anyone—health professional or lay person—who wants to educate others about kidney disease and kidney health.


To become certified Kidney Health Coaches, candidates must take a 45-minute online training course and pass a quiz. AKF provides Kidney Health Coaches with access to tools and resources needed to organize education sessions, along with educational materials, tips for successfully educating adult learners, access to a closed discussion group to share experiences, and support and guidance from the dedicated AKF staff who run the program.


About TMF

TMF Health Quality Institute focuses on improving lives by improving the quality of health care through contracts with federal, state and local governments, as well as private organizations. For more than 40 years, TMF has helped health care providers, practitioners and educators in a variety of settings improve care for the patient. For more information, please visit


About the American Kidney Fund

As the nation’s leading nonprofit working on behalf of the 30 million Americans with kidney disease, the American Kidney Fund is dedicated to ensuring that every kidney patient has access to health care, and that every person at risk for kidney disease is empowered to prevent it. AKF provides a complete spectrum of programs and services: prevention outreach, top-rated health educational resources, and direct financial assistance enabling 1 in 5 U.S. dialysis patients to access lifesaving medical care, including dialysis and transplantation. AKF holds the highest ratings from the nation’s charity watchdog groups, including Charity Navigator, which includes AKF on its “top 10” list of nonprofits with the longest track records of outstanding stewardship of the donated dollar, and GuideStar, which has awarded AKF its Platinum Seal of Transparency.

For more information, please visit, or connect with us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.   


A photo accompanying this announcement is available at


Contact Data