A $50-million medical fund for American kidney patients has received a $4.3-million infusion from the Obama administration, according to the White House.
The American Kidney Fund is a nonprofit that provides services to patients suffering from kidney disease.
It is part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Medicare program that reimburses hospitals for kidney dialysis and other care.
The kidney fund has been under scrutiny since March of this year after reports surfaced that it was accepting $3.5 million in unclaimed Medicare funds.
“The American kidney Fund’s unclaimed fund balances are $5.7 million, $4 million of which was unclaimed due to unclaimed federal Medicare funds, and $2.5.
million was unspent due to the unclaimed NIH funds,” a statement from the White the American Kidneys Fund said.
(HHS has not released the full amount of unclaimed medical funds from Medicare or Medicaid.)
The fund was set up in 2010 by the American Society for Nephrology to provide services to kidney patients, which is also a federally funded program.
HHS said that “unspent NIH funds” were being used for other medical expenses that “do not qualify for Medicare reimbursement,” which is a separate federal program that funds the care of patients with life-threatening conditions.
(HSA funds are not paid directly to hospitals.)
“This is not an isolated case,” said Dr. William M. Smith, who directs the NIH program for organ transplants.
“This is consistent with the fact that most hospitals and many patients have not yet been reimbursed for the treatment they received from the American kidney and the need for timely access to Medicare, Medicaid, and other programs for the care and rehabilitation of patients suffering kidney failure.”
“In recent years, we have seen an increase in the number of patients in the United States who have died from kidney failure and kidney failure has also been associated with higher levels of medical costs,” he added.
In recent weeks, the fund has received donations from the U., Canadian, Danish, and Polish governments, according the statement.
An additional $4-million in unspending funds was earmarked for other health programs, according.