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New support group to aid burn victims, families

Highland Hose volunteer firefighter Jean Cosenza, of Derby, was badly burned in a grease fire in 2010.

She spent a week in the burn unit at Erie County Medical Center and five more weeks convalescing at home with the daily help of a home care nurse.

"As a counselor, I knew the importance of seeking  support after such a traumatic event," she said. "There was nothing available in the Buffalo area."

That will change Thursday, when Cosenza starts what is believed to be the first burn survivor support group in Western New York. The meeting starts at 7 p.m. on the second floor of ECMC 7-8, 462 Grider St., and is designed to help adult burn survivors, as well as their caregivers and families.

She also has agreed to offer peer support in the burn unit as needed.

Cosenza turned to an online burn survivor support group after she was injured, and she attended one of the group’s burn conferences last year.

"Unfortunately, there are burns of all types and severities in the Buffalo area but not much for support and advocacy," she said. "I wanted to make a change and provide for others in a way that the online community has provided for me."

The new group will continue to meet at 7 p.m. the third Thursday of every month at ECMC.

For more information, call 570-8219 or email

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About The Refresh Buffalo Blog

Scott Scanlon

Scott Scanlon

Scott Scanlon is an award-winning reporter and editor who has covered various topics in his quarter-century as a journalist in South Florida, Syracuse and Buffalo. He is aiming to pass along what he is learning these days about health, fitness, nutrition and family life.

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