To fight on a legislative battlefield like Washington, D.C., you need a haven to refresh the troops and develop the strategy for your next invasion, even for something like Medicare regulations.

Baltimore has always been within striking distance (and is now home to the agency that creates those regulations), which perhaps is why 40 years ago the Renal Physicians Association set up camp to put nephrologists in a position of leadership and advocacy for their patients.

This weekend, the RPA will host its annual meeting March 20–23 in Baltimore, where it started. Aside from a packed program agenda, the association will also host a gala honoring its accomplishments over the last four decades.

“Forty years ago, RPA began its quest to serve as the premier advocacy organization for the nephrology community,” wrote RPA executive director Dale Singer, MHA, in a recent preview of the conference for Nephrology News & Issues. “Since then, it has worked to influence and, where appropriate, change laws, regulations, and public programs to accomplish its mission:

  • "To promote optimal care utilizing the highest standards of medical practice for patients with renal and related diseases
  • To promote and protect the professional status of the discipline of nephrology
  • To serve as a resource for the development of national health policy affecting renal physicians and their patients.”

Under the leadership of Mitchell Rosner, MD, the RPA’s conference program committee has had a dual responsibility this year, notes Singer: Celebrate RPA’s success in fulfilling its mission over the past 40 years, and continue its tradition of educating the nephrology community regarding the latest clinical advances in practice as well as changes in regulations, legislation, quality metrics, and business operations.

RPA’s first president, John Sadler, MD, serves as the honorary chair of the 40th anniversary celebration, taking place Saturday night at the Baltimore Hilton to celebrate the association’s achievements and look toward the future (tickets and tables for this special event are sold separately from the meeting registration).

For more information on the conference, and to register, go to www.renalmd.org.