Mindy Weiss Saffer: Christ House

April 16, 2013 § Leave a comment

A principal with the Washington, D.C., commercial real estate leasing firm of West, Lane & Schlager, Mindy W. Saffer is an enthusiastic supporter of Christ House.

While the nation is embroiled in an ongoing debate over health care, Christ House has been addressing the problem for a population usually left out of the national discussion. Since 1985, it has operated as a 24-hour residential medical facility for homeless men and women on the streets of Washington, D.C., one of only 13 or so such facilities throughout the country.

The patients admitted to Christ House are generally referred by other organizations, like shelters and clinics. They suffer from a host of serious illnesses including cancer, HIV/AIDS, stroke, liver disease, and kidney failure, among other disorders. In addition, most have conditions directly attributable to their homelessness, like malnutrition and depression.

When a patient is referred to Christ House, he or she is diagnosed and treated not only for the primary condition for which the referral was made but also for other conditions. In 2011, 272 people were treated by Christ House, of which 81 percent also suffered from HIV, drug or alcohol addiction, or a psychiatric illness. A fourth had all three conditions. The center’s website at http://www.christhouse.org provides a more comprehensive exposition of its history, its work, and its many successes.

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