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Add your voice to our petition on kidney disease in Scotland If you care about the state of kidney care in Scotland, sign our petition

01 February 2024

We have lodged a petition with the Scottish Parliament calling on the Scottish Government to make chronic kidney disease (CKD) a clinical priority. The petition is now live and awaiting your signature. 

All petitions to the Parliament are scrutinised by a committee of MSPs who can make recommendations to the Scottish Government or initiate debates on issues in the Parliament. 

By making CKD a clinical priority its status would be elevated and the Scottish Government and clinical leaders would take action to improve kidney patient outcomes.  

What does ‘clinical priority’ mean? 

If a health condition is made a clinical priority by the Scottish Government, it receives ministerial oversight and dedicated civil service resource to enable budget and opportunities to adopt and implement an action plan. This would set out what steps need to be taken in order to improve care for kidney patients in Scotland and those at-risk of the disease. 

Don't let kidney patients fall through the net

Whilst diabetes and cardiovascular disease are currently deemed clinical priorities, kidney disease is not, which we believe is a short sighted disservice to kidney patients today and those of the future. Kidney patients often fall through the net in Scotland, many diagnosed too late to prevent kidney failure. Clinical guidelines on CKD are in desperate need of overhaul so medics are clear on clinical standards and responsibilities and patients receive the best care. 

Approximately one in ten people develop CKD and our experts are predicting a hugely concerning surge in the number of people that will be reliant on dialysis to stay alive in the next ten years. Dialysis is the main contributor to the costs of kidney disease to NHS Scotland, which could total as much as £834m per year by 2033, unless urgent action is taken. 

The only way to drive change

“For too long chronic kidney disease has suffered from being a Cinderella condition, largely overlooked by policymakers, despite the devastating impact it can have on people’s lives,” says Bushra Riaz, Scotland policy lead for Kidney Research UK.  

“We’re calling on the Scottish Government to make kidney disease a clinical priority in Scotland as we believe this is the only way to ensure an action plan is implemented to drive forward positive action in prevention, early detection and treatment of CKD.

“We are currently writing our own action plan and believe the Scottish Government should adopt it  to ensure Scotland implements change to identify those at risk of CKD, diagnose CKD earlier, and prevent progression, achieving better health outcomes for people with CKD in Scotland.” 

Asian lady wearing pink hijab smiling for the camera in front of a green park
Bushra Riaz, Scotland policy lead for Kidney Research UK.

In the coming weeks, members of Holyrood’s Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee will decide how to take the petition forward. They will seek a response from the Scottish Government, they may commission an independent evaluation, or they might arrange a hearing and invite us and a Scottish minister to give evidence.

Do you want parliamentarians to listen?

If yes, add your name to our petition to make kidney disease a clinical priority.

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