Where We Advocate

The ISN strives to build capacity and support within the healthcare community to create a network of kidney health supporters able to promote the need for improved kidney care to key decision-makers and stakeholders at global, regional, and national levels.

The ISN builds alliances with external stakeholders, including organizations from other disease areas, to strengthen mutual objectives and advocacy efforts.

The ISN is a non-governmental organization (NGO) in official relations with the World Health Organization (WHO): this means that the ISN has a Collaboration Plan with the WHO on five research and advocacy-related activities to understand and address the global burden of kidney diseases within the context of global, regional, and national noncommunicable disease (NCD) strategies.

The ISN is in the process of becoming an NGO in consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

In 2019, at the annual United Nations General Assembly meeting, Member States adopted a high-level Political Declaration on Universal Health Coverage (UHC). This landmark decision increases pressure on national governments to ensure equal access to essential health services without imposing financial hardship on patients. To download ISN’s statements at this high-level meeting, click here.

In 2018, the ISN attended the United Nations High-level Meeting on NCDs in New York. The ISN was the only kidney organization invited to attend the meeting. Read the ISN’s official statement delivered at the meeting here.

The ISN, whose headquarter is located in the heart of Brussels, advocates at the European Union (EU) level for specific EU policies and strategies related to kidney health. Although in the EU, health is a competency of each individual Member State, the EU can complement Member States’ policies with the provision of funding for health-related projects and by facilitating cooperation between them. The EU has also legislative power in certain health-related matters, as for example regarding the measures dealing with the quality and safety of organs and substances of human origin.

On our work with the European Union, we partner with the European Kidney Health Alliance (EKHA) to ensure that kidney disease is at the top of the EU priorities.

The ISN advocates at African Union (AU) level for specific AU policies and strategies related to kidney health. Officially launched in 2002 as a successor to the Organisation of African Unity (OAU, 1963-1999), the AU consists of the 55 member states that make up the countries of the African Continent. Among its missions, the AU works to ensure Africa’s development of its health sector by strengthening Africa’s public health institutions’ capacities, capabilities and partnerships.

The ISN is a member of the NCD Alliance, a global organization leading civil society advocacy to fulfill political commitments on NCD prevention and control. It seeks to ensure that the WHO and United Nations (UN) commitments towards improving the lives of people with NCDs and those at risk are followed-up and implemented at all levels.

The ISN strives for health systems that deliver people-centered, integrated, multisectoral, and comprehensive services aimed at prevention, early detection, and treatment of all NCDs and their risk factors.

The ISN works as a leading member in the Global Coalition for Circulatory Health, led by the World Heart Federation. In 2018, the ISN launched the White Paper for Circulatory Health, calling for an integrated approach to disease management to raise awareness of kidney disease as a significant factor in circulatory health. To download the white paper, click here.

The ISN actively welcomes the inclusion of NCDs in the UN Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals. The ISN further calls for a heightened awareness of the frequently underestimated clinical, economic, and social burdens of kidney diseases.

More information on the relevance of SDGs to kidney diseases can be read in a recent contribution by Dr. Valerie Luyckx on this topic in The Lancet Kidney Campaign.