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Congresswoman Frederica Wilson

Representing the 24th District of Florida

Wilson Questions Florida Department of Health About Safeguarding Dialysis Patients

May 8, 2020
Press Release


Miami, FL – Congresswoman Wilson led a letter to State Surgeon General Scott Rivkees and Governor Ron DeSantis seeking information related to ensuring safe access to dialysis treatment during the COVID-19 pandemic and the risk that COVID-19 poses to Floridians with kidney disease.

Forty-thousand Floridians are living with end-stage renal disease and are at heightened risk for severe illness from COVID-19 because of their weakened immune systems. Many of these patients also require weekly dialysis treatment for which they must leave their homes.

“There have been reports that states are struggling to secure life-saving equipment and supplies like dialysis machines, ventilators and personal protective equipment,” the letter reads. “We urge you to protect vulnerable Floridians with chronic kidney disease and those who may develop kidney problems resulting from COVID-19 by ensuring Florida has access to a sufficient stream of dialysis machines and related supplies.”

“Medically vulnerable Floridians, including those with kidney disease, are counting on Governor DeSantis and the Florida Department of Health to step up and work with health-care providers so that they can continue to receive life-saving treatment,” said Rep. Wilson.

The letter requests information about the rate of infections and deaths among people on dialysis, what is being done to track the availability of machines and supplies required for dialysis, and what steps Florida has taken to acquire more machines and fluid required to dialyze patients.

The letter was signed by Representatives Frederica S. Wilson (FL-24), Val B. Demings (FL-10), Ted E. Deutch (FL-22), Lois Frankel (FL-21), Alcee L. Hastings (FL-20), Al Lawson, Jr. (FL-5), Debbie Mucarsel-Powell (FL-26), Donna E. Shalala (FL-27), Darren Soto (FL-9), and Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL-23).

To read the full letter, click here