ESRD Treatment Choice Learning Collaborative (ETCLC)

Thursday, October 14, 2021

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) announced that the End Stage Renal Disease Treatment Choices Learning Collaborative (ETCLC) went live on August 20, 2021 under the CMS Technical Assistance, Quality Improvement, and Learning (TAQIL) contract.

The TAQIL contract is responsible for the development of the ETCLC. This work supports the ETC payment model which encourages preventative kidney care, home dialysis, and kidney transplant as well as the broader Advancing American Kidney Health initiative. Much of this work is based on the success of the HRSA Organ Donation Breakthrough Collaborative, and the more recent Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network Collaborative Innovation and Improvement Network, or COIIN, effort.

The ETCLC will engage transplant centers, Organ Procurement Organizations (OPOs), large donor hospitals, patients, and donor family members to identify highly effective practices currently in use and spread the use of these practices throughout the organ procurement, kidney care, and kidney transplant community to achieve the following three AIMs:

• AIM #1 Increase the number of deceased donor kidneys transplanted - OPO, transplant program, and patient focused

• AIM #2 Decrease the current national discard rate of all procured kidneys - OPO, transplant program, and patient focused

• AIM #3 Increase the percentage of change for kidneys recovered for transplant in the 60-85 Kidney Donor Profile Index score group - OPO, donor hospital, and donor family focused

Supported by Quality Improvement (QI) Coaches, National Faculty, and professional and patient advocacy groups organized into a Leadership Coordinating Council (LCC), the ETCLC is expected to enroll 80% of transplant centers and OPOs plus the two largest donor hospitals in each OPO’s donor service area into 25 QI Teams, which will participate, collaborate, and change practice to meet the ETCLC AIMs.

Enrollment of transplant centers, OPOs and donor hospitals will occur in September and October with key activities beginning in November, 2021. Members of the TAQIL contractor team will be initiating enrollment via an introductory email, followed by one-on-one phone calls. Information will also be shared through the ESRD Networks and more than 20 professional and patient advocacy organizations that have committed to support the ETCLC. Participating institutions will be organized into 25 Quality Improvement (QI Teams), each led by a QI Coach to focus their change efforts on one or more of the AIMs.

For additional information about the ETC Learning Collaborative contact