December 19, 2017
France – IRIS apartments for PID patients’ families
IRIS, the French primary immunodeficiencies (PIDs) patient group, just made available a new apartment in Marseille (South of France) to host families with a primary immunodeficiency child undergoing Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation (HSCT) in La Timone University hospital.
IRIS has for many years made two flats available in Paris for PID patients and their families and is now very happy to extend this support to the PID community in Marseille.
Helping patients and families going through HSCT with housing represents a major financial commitment for IRIS but this is when families need the most support.
“Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation (HSCT) is a difficult and life-threatening process and the availability of the parents for their child is needed for obvious psychological reasons”, explains Virginie Grosjean, executive director of IRIS.
Why in Marseille? University Hospital La Timone in Marseille (part of CEREDIH, the national centre of reference for PIDs) is acknowledged by the French health authorities for their expertise in transplantation in Children with PIDs and an increased number of young PID patients has been treated there.
How does this work? “IRIS provides these flats in coordination with the hospital social workers and by considering the global situation of the family. First, the health status of the child is looked upon, then the situation of the family (financial situation, professional situation, other children, psychological evaluation, etc) and occupancy can go up to six months.”Aurélie, a mother of a PID patient who stayed with her family in one of the apartments in Paris stated “This was so great for us, the apartment was our escape, the place where we, the parents, could meet outside the hospital. The cost of the apartments in Paris is quite high and we could never afford another type of housing.”
IRIS charges only a small rent, about the third of the actual rent. This type of housing is made available thanks to the generosity of donors and the engagement of volunteers who gather funds to cover the rents and expenses of these flats.