From: Todd Martini (tmartini@AlexUpdate.com)
To: Julie Komanetsky
Subject: Apartment Photos
Here are the photos that I promised. They are:
077 - Alex's Bedroom Carpet
080 - Ventilation Grate in Kitchen
083 - Laundry Room (this is an open area right off the kitchen)
084 - Kitchen Floor
085 - Ventilation Grate in Living Room (I tried to remove the grate to see inside, but it was stuck. Obviously the ventilation system hasn't been cleaned for quite a long time.)
I honestly believe that an apartment like this is a health hazard to any transplant patient (and their family), as there are definite signs that Aspergillus, mold and other inhalable contaminants are present. There are several other problems with the apartments including:
1) The apartments, carpets and furniture are not thoroughly cleaned between occupants.
2) There is peeling wallpaper and structural damage to the walls in the apartment.
3) The ventilation systems do not appear to have been cleaned in several years.
4) Several appliances (dryer, dishwasher, etc...) are performing less than satisfactorily. (e.g. drying a load of clothes would take 2-3 run-throughs)
5) Most of the linens, kitchenware, towels, etc. look like they were bought at a 2nd hand thrift shop.
By comparison the Apartment complex we are in now (North Pointe Commons w/ Oakwood providing the furnishings, linens, etc...) is a brand new complex with clean apartments, new furniture, appliances, linens, kitchenware, towels, etc... All this for only $90/month more than The Forest.
I understand that NCCS is getting a break on the one bedroom apartment pricing from Korman Communities and know that saving money is important, but is it really worth the health of a child? We already know of one boy who lived at The Forest during Alex's 1st transplant who contracted Aspergillus and we're seriously considering contacting more families about their experiences. Obviously this is not the way we want to be spending the little spare time that we have, and this should probably be handled by our social worker, but she is not inclined to get involved.
There is no way I would have moved to North Pointe Commons, if I didn't believe The Forest to be an unhealthy place to bring my daughter back to after transplant. We have been going through this for over 4 1/2 years and really don't have a spare $1200/month lying around to pay for the new apartment. In fact I'll probably have to skip a couple of mortgage payments to make ends meet, but there is no way I will ever compromise the safety and health of my daughter to save a few dollars.
I really am unable to understand your new policy of dealing with only The Forest. If it is question of cost, then explain to transplant families that you will only pay $1200/month, regardless of what the actual cost of a one bedroom apartment is at the apartment complex they wish to stay at. At the very least provide more than one choice of Apartment complexes. Forcing families to stay in unhealthy conditions to receive your funding is not really helping them.
Give me a call at (919) xxx-xxxx if you have any questions. Thanks again for your consideration.
-- Todd Martini