Persephone Augoustides-Savvopoulou is Professor Emeritus of the Medical Faculty of the Aristotelian University of Thessaloniki (AUTH). Till retirement in 2011, Professor Savvopoulou was Director of the Metabolic Unit of the 1st Paediatric Department, AUTH, the referral centre for inherited metabolic diseases (IMDs) in Northern Greece. She gained invaluable insight to the challenges facing not only patients but medical professionals as well. IMDs are individually rare and unknown to most, accounting for over 20% of rare diseases. The Society for Patients and Friends of Patients with Inherited Metabolic Diseases “KRIKOS ZOIS” (www.krikoszois.gr), was founded in 2007 in Thessaloniki on her initiative with the support of 29 families in order to 1) increase awareness of IMDs, 2) to advocate for the special needs of those suffering from IMDs, 3) to provide support for patients and their families. Currently, “KRIKOS ZOIS” is the leading patient society for a wide variety of IMDs in Greece and collaborates with EURORDIS, Metabolic Support UK, HCU Australia, MetabERN and recently with 95 Rare Alliance Greece and Takeda Hellas in a nationwide campaign for rare diseases. Professor Savvopoulou is a founding member and represents “KRIKOS ZOIS” on the recently elected executive board of the umbrella association for rare patient societies which is officially recognized by EURORDIS as Rare Diseases Greece.

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