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Message from the New President

 

 Hidetomo Nakamoto
 Department of General Internal Medicine, Saitama Medical University

 



I was appointed as the next president of the Japanese Society for Dialysis Therapy (JSDT) at the board meeting held on June 9, 2016.  The predecessor association of the JSDT was founded in 1968 as a voluntary academic association with the name of the Dialysis Research Association.  In 1985, it was renamed the Japanese Society for Dialysis Therapy.  The society was approved as an incorporated association in 1993 and has subsequently developed into the current JSDT.  As a result of the revision of corporate forms accompanying the public interest corporation reforms, the JSDT became a general incorporated association on September 3, 2012.  Currently, the JSDT has 17,000 members (including individual, facility, and supporting members) and is one of the major societies in Japan.  The JSDT academic meetings and annual meetings are known for providing an academic forum where approximately 20,000 medical professionals who are engaged in dialysis therapy in Japan can come together.  Many participants engage in enthusiastic discussions every year.  I am honored to serve as the president of such a major society.

More than 40 years has passed since dialysis therapy started to be widely provided to patients with end-stage renal failure in Japan to enable their return to social activities and to prolong their lives.  Thanks to our predecessors’ tremendous efforts, dialysis therapy in Japan has made great progress, resulting in the country becoming one of the world’s dialysis superpowers.  While receiving dialysis therapy, many dialysis patients are continuing to play active roles in society.  The prognosis of dialysis patients in Japan is better than that of patients in any other country.  However, we have encountered several major problems, requiring a major change in dialysis therapy in Japan.  For example, the annual rate of increase of dialysis patients has slowed down due to the increasing elderly patients on dialysis; medical costs have increased due to increasing number of dialysis patients; and medical treatment for patients with end-stage failure has been discussed.  In addition, the aging of dialysis patients and the increase in the number of dialysis patients with complications will probably become more serious problems in the future.  I would like to discuss with the members how the JSDT should respond to these problems.

In 2017, the Medical Specialist System will be launched by the Japan Medical Specialty Board as a new system for doctors.  However, the direction the system will take is still unclear.  The JSDT has not yet been approved by the Japan Medical Specialty Board and is still undergoing interviews by the Board.  Currently, the JSDT Committee for the Medical Specialist System is working towards the establishment of new programs for medical specialists that comply with the policy of the Board so that the JSDT can be approved by the Board as early as possible.  This is one of the most important tasks for the JSDT.  In addition, there are several certification systems in the field of nursing, such as for special nurses (those who can carry out special medical practices) certified by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, nurses certified by the Japanese Nursing Association, and nurses engaging in dialysis treatment (Dialysis Leading Nurses) certified by the Japan Academy of Nephrology Nursing.  In clinical engineering, there are certification systems for special clinical engineers certified by the Japan Association for Clinical Engineers and dialysis technical engineers certified by the Dialysis Therapy Joint Committee (consisting of the Japanese Society of Nephrology, the Japanese Urological Association, the Japanese Society for Artificial Organs, the Japan Society for Transplantation, and the JSDT).  The roles of such certification systems will also be discussed in relation to the careers of nurses, clinical engineers, and nutritionists.  I believe that the JSDT should explore the roles of the Medical Specialty System in collaboration with outside societies such as the Japanese Nursing Association, the Japan Academy of Nephrology Nursing, the Japan Association for Clinical Engineers, and the Japanese Society for Technology of Blood Purification.  This is the time to reexamine the roles of the certification systems.  Also, the direction of the JSDT should be clarified soon.

The database on the results of the JSDT statistical surveys is well recognized worldwide and is expected to be further enriched in the future.  The preparation of guidelines is also requested from people in many fields.  To this end, the JSDT is responsible for disseminating original evidence gathered in Japan to the world.  We will promptly enrich and improve the contents of statistical surveys.

Moreover, an unbalanced situation in that the numbers of peritoneal dialysis patients and transplant recipients are much smaller than that of hemodialysis patients has been pointed out.  We would like to address such existing problems in collaboration with related societies such as the Japanese Society of Nephrology, the Japanese Society for Peritoneal Dialysis, the Japan Society for Transplantation, and the Japanese Society for Clinical Renal Transplantation.  The most appropriate medical environment for patients with renal failure in Japan will be pursued in order to provide them with optimal medical services.  I appreciate the cooperation of patients, JSDT members, and all the professionals related to medical services for renal failure, as well as the support from related societies, associations, and companies.

June 2016

 
 

 

 

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