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Letter: Group home very helpful for son’s care

Dimitra Cilento visits her 22-year-old disabled daughter, Stephanie,

Dimitra Cilento visits her 22-year-old disabled daughter, Stephanie, at St. Mary's Hospital for Children in Bayside, Queens, on Dec. 10, 2015. Stephanie, who is connected to a feeding tube and sometimes a ventilator, is one of thousands of young adults aging out of pediatric care facilities in the metropolitan area. Photo Credit: Newsday / Alejandra Villa

Thank you for your well-written article about young people with complex medical conditions who need around-the-clock care [“Patients at crossroads,” News, Jan. 3].

Our late son Michael and we experienced the multitude of challenging situations this story described. Hopefully, your article will bring into focus the need for homelike residences for medically complex and fragile special-needs young adults.

At age 11, Michael was placed in Pennsylvania because of the lack of appropriate facilities in New York to meet his needs. At 18, he returned to live in a geriatric nursing home.

Six years later, through an incredible agency, Independent Group Home Living in Manorville, Michael was given the opportunity to live in a seven-bed home with other young people. The home was staffed with 24-hour nursing care.

This rare opportunity of a homelike setting is where he spent the rest of his days. It was a peaceful, compassionate, dignified environment. His quality of life was greatly enhanced, and we will be forever grateful to IGHL and its staff.

Alice L. Zapf, Garden City