KidneyMobile Reaches Milestone: Screens 30,000th Person in Illinois

Chicago, IL- This June, the National Kidney Foundation of Illinois (NKFI) announced that it reached a new milestone: the organization has screened 30,000 people in Illinois for kidney disease.  This was accomplished through the NKFI’s signature program, the KidneyMobile®, which is a custom mobile exhibit offering free prevention education and health screenings for high blood pressure, diabetes and kidney disease to Illinois communities.

The KidneyMobile® was launched in November 2005, and its first priority is to provide health screenings to underserved communities with limited or insufficient access to healthcare.  A typical screening includes free comprehensive tests for high blood pressure, diabetes and kidney disease, followed by one-on-one consults with a doctor or nurse practitioner so that every screening participant understands his/her results and is referred to further treatment if necessary.  Unfortunately, nearly 75 percent of the now 30,000 individuals in Illinois that have been screened by the KidneyMobile® had at least one abnormal test result. 

“I’ve screened hundreds of people that are finding out that they are diabetic, hypertensive, or have kidney disease for the very first time,” said NKFI’s Nurse Practitioner Nancy Lepain.  “It’s unfortunate, but it means that they can seek the treatment they need or can make necessary lifestyle changes before the disease worsens.”

The KidneyMobile®’s goals are to prevent kidney disease by diagnosing individuals in the early stages through screenings and to provide education on kidney disease and its leading causes: diabetes and high blood pressure. 

Twenty-three-year-old Judith Cardena found out she had kidney disease after attending a screening.  “We didn’t have enough information before the screening,” said Cardena.  “Now we have more information, we know more about kidney disease, and we know how to deal with it.”

The KidneyMobile® has screened more than 2,100 people just this year and has 65 screenings scheduled for 2012.  That number continues to grow as community partners across the state request screenings in their areas. 

Currently, the KidneyMobile® is funded through private donations and matched state funding; however, that funding can stop at any time.  To learn more about the KidneyMobile or to make a donation to keep it on the road in Illinois, visit www.kidneymobile.org.