Cystic Fibrosis Ireland Establishes Grants for Personal Protective Equipment

Cystic Fibrosis Ireland Establishes Grants for Personal Protective Equipment
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Cystic Fibrosis Ireland has set aside up to €120,000 ($141,150) to provide personal protective equipment (PPE) to people with cystic fibrosis (CF) in the Republic of Ireland.

Those interested may apply for individual grants of €100 per applicant through Aug. 22. Applications to the PPE grant should be completed online at www.cfireland.ie/ppe-grant.

“People with cystic fibrosis are still ‘cocooning’ but as we move towards further possible relaxation of the COVID-19 regulations in forthcoming weeks and months, it is important that they have some practical assistance towards the costs of PPE if and when they go back to study, training or employment,” Philip Watt, CEO of Cystic Fibrosis Ireland, said in a press release.

Apart from these grants, CF Ireland has supported people with CF during the COVID-19 pandemic with a variety of measures. Those include the creation of online counseling tools for members and access to online mentoring and exercise programs. The organization also has helped several hospital CF units develop virtual clinics by providing financial aid.

Other initiatives taken by the organization to promote the well-being of the CF community include teaching support and educational webinars, as well as emergency financial support and access to practical everyday items such as alcohol-based hand gel.

People with impaired lung function, as is common in CF, are at higher risk for severe manifestations of COVID-19 and of worse outcomes from the infection. PPE, such as clean masks and gloves, have been shown to provide significant protection against infection.

“While people with cystic fibrosis are well used to observing regular and proper hand-washing, cough etiquette and social distancing, research among our members has highlighted PPE as a particular issue,” Watt said.

“As a member-led organization, we know that there are additional costs associated with purchasing PPE for non-hospital activities and we hope that this initiative will help with some of these additional expenses as we continue to navigate our way through this pandemic,” Watt said.

Eligible applicants must be permanent residents of the Republic of Ireland and registered as a member of Cystic Fibrosis Ireland. There is no charge for registration.

Grant eligibility is not tied to income. More information can be found at www.cfireland.ie.

Forest Ray received his PhD in systems biology from Columbia University, where he developed tools to match drug side effects to other diseases. He has since worked as a journalist and science writer, covering topics from rare diseases to the intersection between environmental science and social justice. He currently lives in Long Beach, California.
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Patrícia holds her PhD in Medical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases from the Leiden University Medical Center in Leiden, The Netherlands. She has studied Applied Biology at Universidade do Minho and was a postdoctoral research fellow at Instituto de Medicina Molecular in Lisbon, Portugal. Her work has been focused on molecular genetic traits of infectious agents such as viruses and parasites.

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Forest Ray received his PhD in systems biology from Columbia University, where he developed tools to match drug side effects to other diseases. He has since worked as a journalist and science writer, covering topics from rare diseases to the intersection between environmental science and social justice. He currently lives in Long Beach, California.
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