Welcome to Switzerland

Dear DEBRA family,

On behalf of DEBRA Switzerland and the International DEBRA Congress Organising Committee we would like to welcome you to Switzerland!

The DEBRA International Congress is an annual event that has been held in Europe, South America, North America and the Asia-Pacific region. The 2018 Congress will take place in Zermatt, Switzerland.

The Congress brings together delegates from national DEBRA groups, scientists and researchers, medical professionals, EB patients and families, and industry representatives.

This Congress is a great opportunity to see the Matterhorn and to experience a village full of superlatives offering a rich variety of mountain romance.

Zermatt is car-free and accessible for disabled visitors. Everything in Zermatt is packed into a very small area, so it is the perfect location for butterfly children and their companions. Come, relax and recharge your batteries as you breathe in the healthy Swiss mountain air.


Welcoming speech by Federal Councillor Alain Berset

Ladies and Gentlemen,                       

A rare disease such as epidermolysis bullosa affects not only individuals, but also their families and their environment. Younger patients, also known as ‘Butterfly Children’, are now able to live to adulthood thanks to medical progress. However, in order to survive with their extremely fragile skin they must cope with numerous difficulties over the course of their lives, difficulties that are also shared by their relatives.

The Federal Council wants to improve the quality of life of people with rare diseases. It therefore adopted the ‘National Rare Disease Policy’ in 2014, and at the end of 2017 extended its implementation by two years. What is needed are rapid diagnoses, good care, support in everyday life, better research and good international cooperation.

The patient organisation DEBRA has tremendous merit. First and foremost, DEBRA pools knowledge, including patient expertise. The national groups network people and organisations on a national and international level. This information is used by those directly affected and their relatives, but also by medical and non-medical personnel. In this, DEBRA plays a pioneering role.

I congratulate DEBRA Switzerland on its twentieth birthday, and wish all participants a stimulating and insightful congress.

Alain Berset           
President of the Swiss Confederation,

Head of the Federal Department of Home Affairs



20 YEARS OF DEBRA SWITZERLAND - Celebrate with us!

We are also celebrating the 20th anniversary of DEBRA Switzerland with a special evening dinner, when we will spoil you not only with local culinary specialities, but also with a few surprises too. Come and celebrate with us! We would be delighted to welcome you as our guests. 

Let the butterflies spread their wings at the foot of the Matterhorn!


Tanja Reusser
President of DEBRA Switzerland