Mid-America Transplant’s Family House is growing. Plans are underway for a new 34,000-square-foot building in St. Louis City, which will provide double the capacity of the existing Family House. Funded by the Mid-America Transplant Foundation, the Family House has been an integral part of minimizing the burdens that patients and families face while awaiting or recovering from a lifesaving transplant.
“When an organ becomes available, there is only a short window of time in which it can be transplanted – and for patients from outside St. Louis, there weren’t many options for comfortable, affordable long-term housing where they could wait for that call,” said Nesa Joseph, Foundation board chair at Mid-America Transplant. “The Mid-America Transplant Family House provides these families with a home here in St. Louis, so as soon as an organ becomes available, they can quickly get to the hospital to receive it.”
Located in Dogtown, the new Family House will be in close proximity to St. Louis’ four major transplant centers: Barnes-Jewish Hospital, St. Louis Children’s Hospital, SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital and SSM Health Saint Louis University Hospital.
An average of 40 patients and their families stay at the existing Family House each year, and the average length of stay is 94 days. The Family House provides a far more affordable housing option than hotels or rental properties. Standard rates range from $15 to $25 per day and reduced rates are available for eligible families. It is also staffed by Mid-America Transplant employees, who provide added support to families during their transplant journey.
“Our patients come from all over the country and often need to stay in St. Louis for extended periods of time while they wait for a lifesaving transplant, so we are grateful to be able to connect them to the Family House,” said Gene Ridolfi, transplant administrator at Barnes-Jewish Hospital. “Not only is it a home for their family, but it’s also a place to connect with other families also undergoing the difficult wait. Those connections bring our patients hope, comfort and healing, and I’m glad that the new Family House will be able to provide this support to even more patients.”
The new Family House will feature 21 apartments ranging from one to three bedrooms, and each will have a private kitchen, bathroom, and washer and dryer. Other amenities include wireless internet, cable TV and a fitness center. It will be located in a vibrant neighborhood with access to restaurants and Forest Park attractions, including a free zoo and museums.
“The Family House is an important part of our mission to be stewards of our donors’ lifesaving gifts,” said Diane Brockmeier, president and CEO at Mid-America Transplant. “We’re helping to ensure that when an organ becomes available, the patient is ready to receive it, and can remain close-by for ongoing care following their transplant. Through these successful transplants, our donors’ legacies live on.”
To learn more about the Family House, refer a patient or apply to stay, visit midamericatransplant.org/our-foundation/family-house.
About Mid-America Transplant
Mid-America Transplant enables adults and children to receive lifesaving gifts through organ and tissue donations. For more than 40 years, it has facilitated and coordinated organ and tissue donation, and now serves 84 counties covering eastern Missouri, southern Illinois and northeast Arkansas that together are home to 4.7 million people. It saves lives by providing expert and compassionate care for organ donors, recipients and families, and transforms the clinical processes required to recover and transplant organs and tissues. Mid-America Transplant was the first such organization in the U.S. to use an in-house operating room for organ recovery and pioneered innovative models of increasing donor registry enrollment in an effort to provide organs and tissues to those in need. It is federally designated as one of 58 such organizations in the U.S., and is the first organ procurement organization to be recognized as a recipient of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award for Performance Excellence. For more information, visit www.midamericatransplant.org.