In a statement released Jan. 31, the American Society of Nephrology said it is “deeply concerned that President Trump’s recent Executive Order on Immigration will disrupt the society’s mission and have a damaging long-term effect on the fight to prevent, treat, and cure kidney diseases across the globe.”

The association released the statement four days after President Trump signed an executive order suspending refugee resettlement and entry into the U.S. of people from several countries.

ASN said they are concerned the order could interrupt current training of physicians, scientists, and health professionals and worsen the problems facing the nephrology workforce.


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“In academic year 2016 alone, more than 65% of the 863 nephrology fellows-in-training graduated from international medical schools, according to the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education,” the society said.

The American Medical Association sent a letter on Feb. 1 to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on Feb. 1 clarification on the immigration order.

“While we understand the importance of a reliable system for vetting people from other nations entering the United States, it is vitally important that this process not impact patient access to timely medical treatment or restrict physicians and international medical graduates (IMGs) who have been granted visas to train, practice, or attend medical conferences in the United States,” AMA CEO James L. Madara,MD wrote. “The AMA is concerned that this executive order is negatively impacting patient access to care and creating unintended consequences for our nation’s health care system.”

The full ASN statement is below:

Kidney diseases do not differentiate among race, religion, or geographic borders.

As such, the American Society of Nephrology (ASN) is deeply concerned that President Trump’s recent Executive Order on Immigration will disrupt the society’s mission and have a damaging long-term effect on the fight to prevent, treat, and cure kidney diseases across the globe.

ASN ensures that education and training in kidney care and research is available to physicians, scientists, and health professionals from all backgrounds. The Executive Order on Immigration may interrupt current training, impede access to future education, and worsen the current crisis facing the nephrology workforce. In academic year 2016 alone, more than 65 percent of the 863 nephrology fellows-in-training graduated from international medical schools, according to the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education.

Each year, ASN’s annual conference, Kidney Week, serves as the world’s premiere nephrology meeting, where more than 13,000 physicians, scientists, and other kidney health professionals from nearly 120 countries discuss the latest scientific and medical advances that will translate into improved kidney health for people throughout the world. Approximately one-half of Kidney Week participants travel to the United States for the meeting.

ASN reiterates its unwavering commitment to educating health professionals and scientists and advocating for the highest quality care for patients. These goals can only be met by promoting diversity and inclusiveness to enhance the nephrology profession and the lives of people with kidney diseases through improved health care, research, and education.

A diverse and inclusive ASN fosters innovation, creativity, and sensitivity to advance health for all people living with kidney diseases, and serves as a model for organizations dedicated to health equity. ASN’s values serve as the society’s guiding principles to effect positive change in the profession of nephrology and the lives of people with kidney diseases:

  • Inclusiveness: Encouraging contributions and collaboration among colleagues.
  • Mentorship: Improving career opportunities for professionals dedicated to curing kidney diseases.
  • Health Equity: Working strategically to eliminate disparities in the diagnosis and treatment of kidney diseases.
  • Advocacy: Promoting universal access to quality care for all people living with kidney diseases.
  • Engagement: Supporting civic engagement and community service as part of the professional experience.

Cooperation among all cultures and countries is critical to ASN’s efforts to advance scientific work for a more vibrant, healthier America and global health ecosystem.