WASHINGTON, Sept. 2 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Dialysis Patient Citizens (DPC) -- a nationwide, non-profit patient advocacy group comprised of more than 23,000 dialysis and pre-dialysis patients and family members working to advance the quality of life of dialysis patients -- announced this month the addition of three new board members -- Dr. Gene Copello, of Washington, D.C.; Erich Ditschman, of East Lansing, MI; and Nancy Scott, of New Castle, DE. All newly appointed members come to the board with a wealth of experience in the kidney environment where they have worked to understand the issues of importance to dialysis patients and the difficulties patients sometimes face. Dr. A. Gene Copello has 25 years of public health program and public policy experience. He is the Executive Director of The AIDS Institute, a national nonprofit and nonpartisan public policy research, advocacy, and education organization. The agency is affiliated with the University of South Florida where Dr. Copello is an Assistant Professor in the College of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases and International Medicine. Previously, Dr. Copello served as Chief of HIV Services for the City of San Francisco and as Executive Director of the San Mateo County AIDS Program in California. He began his career in HIV/AIDS as a faculty member at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, where he also founded and directed the Vanderbilt AIDS Project. Erich Ditschman, of East Lansing, MI, is the former President/CEO of Clinton River Watershed Council. Ditschman has been involved with DPC for years through his work as a DPC Patient Ambassador. He has met with Congressional leaders and staff in Washington, D.C. and over the past six years, has organized a team for the Mid Michigan Walk, which has raised over $42,000 for the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan. A home hemo dialysis patient, he is the moderator of NxStage Users Group and was the recipient of the February 2008 DPC Hero Award, which honors an individual who goes above and beyond to make a difference in the lives of others Nancy Scott, of New Castle, DE, is a registered nurse, an ordained minister, and has been an in-center hemodialysis patient since her kidney disease diagnosis in 2004. Since then, she has been involved with DPC as a Patient Ambassador. She also serves as a patient representative of Advisory Board at ESRD Network 4 and a Chairperson at Henrietta Johnson Medical Center for Clinical Evaluation Committee. Scott has also established a support group to encourage better communication between clinic staff and patients, and has traveled to Washington, D.C., to meet with lawmakers. Scott was the recipient of the November 2007 DPC Hero Award. "The addition of these board members will enhance DPC's ability to educate Americans about the importance of kidney health. It remains important that we educate all friends and neighbors as well as Members of Congress on the importance of education awareness and quality dialysis care," said DPC Executive Director Chad Lennox. "We are inspired by the continued support, work and service to the kidney community of Dr. Gene Copello, Erich Ditschman and Nancy Scott." The majority of the members on the DPC Board of Directors are current dialysis patients. Board members are chosen based on their work experience, community service and kidney care community involvement. Board members typically have a background in advocacy and bring with them diverse knowledge and experience that allows the organization to move forward. About Dialysis Patient Citizens Dialysis Patient Citizens (DPC) is a nonprofit patient organization dedicated to improving dialysis patients' quality of life by developing awareness of dialysis issues, advocating for dialysis patients, improving the partnership between patients and caregivers, and promoting favorable public policy. To learn more about DPC, please visit www.dialysispatients.org.
SOURCE Dialysis Patient Citizens