This activity defines “polypharmacy” and demonstrates how it harms dialysis patients and contributes to non-adherence.  Essential information on drug-drug and drug-food interactions is presented, along with a discussion of the high pill burden encountered in dialysis.  Factors that contribute to polypharmacy are reviewed and viable solutions are described, including medication reconciliation programs, medication therapy management, and integrated pharmacy services.  

Original release date: December 1, 2015 
Review date: December 8, 2016
Expiration date: December 1, 2017

Learning Objectives: 

After participation in this activity, learners will be able to:

  • Define "polypharmacy"
  • Discuss consequences of inappropriate polypharmacy
  • Discuss methods to prevent inappropriate polypharmacy

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Target Audience

  • Registered Dietitians (RDs)
  • Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs)
  • Nutriton and Dietetic Technicians, Registered (NDTRs)
  • Dietetic Technicians, Registered (DTRs)
CE Information:


The National Kidney Foundation is a Continuing Professional Education (CPE) Accredited Provider with the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR).  CDR Credentialed Practitioners will receive 1.5 Continuing Professional Education Units (CPEUs) for completion of this activity/material.

Method of Participation:

Learners will review the materials on accreditation information, target audience, learning objectives, and disclosure information; participate in the entire self-study consisting of slides and audio; and complete the post-test (minimum score of 70% required) and evaluation to successfully earn credit.  The estimated time for completion is 1.5 hours. 

Declaration of Disclosure:

It is the policy of the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) to ensure balance, independence, objectivity, and scientific rigor in all CME/CE activities. Any individual who has control over CME/CE content is required to disclose to learners prior to the activity any relevant financial relationship(s) they may have with commercial interests supporting this activity or whose products or devices are discussed in this activity.  

If, on the basis of information disclosed, a perceived conflict exists, resolution will be achieved based on NKF's Disclosure and Conflict of Interest Policy.

Unlabeled/Investigational Use:

During their presentations, faculty may discuss an unlabeled use or an investigational use not approved for a commercial product. Each faculty member is required to disclose this information to the audience when referring to an unlabeled or investigational use.


The faculty and National Kidney Foundation (NKF) do not recommend the use of any pharmaceutical, diagnostic test, or device outside of the labeled indications as approved by the FDA. Please refer to the official prescribing information for each product for approved indications, contraindications, and warnings.

Information contained in this NKF educational resource is based upon current data available at the time of publication. Information is intended to help clinicians become aware of new scientific findings and developments.  This NKF educational resource is not intended to set out a preferred standard of care and should not be construed as one. Neither should the information be interpreted as prescribing an exclusive course of management.

Variations in practice will inevitably and appropriately occur when clinicians take into account the needs of individual patients, available resources, and limitations unique to an institution or type of practice. Every healthcare professional making use of information in this NKF educational resource is responsible for interpreting the data as it pertains to clinical decision making in each individual patient.

Course summary
Available credit: 
  • 1.50 Attendance
  • 1.50 CDR CPEUs
Course opens: 
Course expires: 
Faculty Disclosures:

Wendy St. Peter, PharmD, FNKF, FASN, FCCP
University of Minnesota
Minneapolis, MN
Disclosure: No financial relationships with commercial interest(s).

Planning Committee Disclosures:

Kristine D’Angelo David, RD
Medical Science Liaison
Sigma-Tau Pharmaceuticals
Gaithersburg, MD
Disclosure: Receives salary from Sigma-Tau Pharmaceuticals.

Beth Shanaman, RD
Northwest Kidney Centers
Seattle, WA
Disclosure: No financial relationships with commercial interest(s).

Amy Pai, PharmD
Associate Professor
University of Michigan College of Pharmacy
Ann Arbor, MI
Disclosure: Received a consulting fee from AMAG Pharmaceuticals, and an honoraria from AstraZeneca for her role on an advisory board.

Gail Torres, MS, RD, RN
KLS Program Director
National Kidney Foundation
New York, NY
Disclosure: No financial relationships with commercial interest(s).

Nathalie Harden
Director, CME
National Kidney Foundation
New York, NY
Disclosure: Has no financial relationships with commercial interest(s).

Danielle Nathan, MA
Professional Education Director
National Kidney Foundation
New York, NY
Disclosure: No financial relationships with commercial interest(s).

Anna Okoniewski
CME/CE Activities Manager
National Kidney Foundation
New York, NY
Disclosure: Has no financial relationships with commercial interest(s).

Rita Dimmitt, RD, CSR, LDN
Registered Dietitian
Vanderbilt Dialysis Clinic, managed by FMC
Nashville, TN
Disclosure: Receives salary from Fresenius & B. Braun

Natalie Tia, MPH, RD, CSR
Transplant Dietitian
UC Irvine Medical Center: Division of Transplant
Orange, CA
Disclosure: No financial relationships with commercial interest(s).

Available Credit

  • 1.50 Attendance
  • 1.50 CDR CPEUs


Please login or register for a PERC account to take this course.

Required Hardware/software

System requirements can be found here.

Contact Information:

For any questions concerning this activity, please send an email to CMEinfo@kidney.org or call NKF at 1-800-622-9010.

To view NKF privacy and confidentiality policy as it relates to CME/CE activity, please visit http://www.kidney.org/

For additional professional education resources, contact NKF at 1-800-622-9010 or visit https://www.kidney.org/professionals