Update 9/8/17 3:45pm:
A huge THANK YOU to everyone who has donated so far. We’ve come a long way since we started the Hurricane Harvey Cystic Fibrosis Relief Fund last week.
Thanks to your generous contributions we are putting the finishing touches on sending out our 2nd shipment to Houston today! I just got word from Baylor College of Medicine (BCM) that they received our first shipment earlier this week!
After today, we will have sent out 20 brand new nebulizers, 200 neb-cups, 200 surgical respirators, 20 duffle bags, over a dozen baby bottle sterilizers (for neb-cups), several cases of hand sanitizer and various clothing items. This is really amazing, so thank you so much! These items are going to be spread between BCM and Texas Children’s Hospital.
Here’s a picture of just some of the stuff we are sending:
Now for an update on the situation in Texas….
We’ve come to learn that about two-dozen cystic fibrosis families have been displaced. It’s still hard to know exactly how many families have lost every, what can be replaced or the overall scope of the catastrophe. As of this update, we are still waiting on assessments from the children’s CF clinic in Corpus-Christi.
Unfortunately, I expect the overall number of families that need assistance to rise, and if it does, we will continue to send the necessary medical equipment so that the CF families impacted by the hurricane can continue critical CF care.
With that, we are also going to begin phase two of our relief efforts, so that means we still need YOUR HELP.
This is more of a long-term aid package.
We are in the process of putting together a relief grant program, and at some point over the next couple weeks, we will be accepting grant applications from cystic fibrosis families so that we can help them rebuild and return to a bit of normalcy.
Again, this is only possible with YOUR help. Please consider going to our relief fund to donate to these cystic fibrosis families today!
If you are one of these CF families along the Gulf Coast who have been impacted by the hurricane, please contact your cystic fibrosis clinic. We will be working with the clinic social workers so that this program can run smoothly.
Also… I have gotten a lot of messages about people willing to send stockpiles of medications to those in need in Texas. Unfortunately that isn’t possible as the transit of prescribed medications is illegal.
Finally, I just want to say that with each conversation I have had with the people on the ground in Texas over the past week, my heart has broken a little each time, but I’ve come away feeling totally inspired by their courage, passion, resilience and drive to get through this disaster.
Original Post 8/31/17:
Hurricane Harvey is quickly proving to be one of the most horrific natural disasters in modern history. People living along the Gulf Coast in Texas and Louisiana are in dire need of aid, and they need US to help.
No part of the population is more vulnerable during crises than those living with disabilities or medical conditions.
People with cystic fibrosis are reliant on daily medications, medical equipment, clean water, food and shelter to survive. When those things are cut off, a patient’s life is in jeopardy.
A few hours ago I spoke with the interim clinic director at the Baylor College of Medicine Cystic Fibrosis Center in downtown Houston, to assess not only some of their patients’ needs, but also the needs of patients who are seen at Texas Children’s Hospital CF Center in Houston. Combined, they follow a patient population of over 600.
The Boomer Esiason Foundation is starting a RELIEF FUND to help meet some of the needs of cystic fibrosis patients in the affected areas, from medical supplies to everyday expenses and financial assistance.
At this point I have learned that the CF centers have only heard from a small percentage of their patients and at least a handful of those patients and their families living along the Gulf Coast have lost everything, with initial estimates surely to rise.
We will be coordinating relief efforts with the CF Centers in Houston to help find and support these cystic fibrosis families in whatever way we can.
I will update this page as we continue to learn more about some of the specific needs for CF families in the area, and will also share how your donations are impacting the CF community.
No donation is too small! Your kindness will go a long way to help some of these families recover and rebuild.
If you are a cystic fibrosis patient in the Houston or Gulf Coast area, please get in touch with your CF center, so that they may direct you towards the appropriate resources.