Interested in joining a support group?
Mesothelioma patients who are interested in joining a support group have many options to choose from. It is important to first consider what you would like to get out of your support group experience. Many support groups are designed to cater to current patients, others may be exclusively for caregivers or survivors. Some groups are meant to offer spiritual or emotional support while some may be centered on education or research.
Once you have determined what type of support group you are interested in joining, you can then consider what format will work best for you. Many in person groups are offered at local cancer centers, while others are more informal – meeting in coffee shops, churches or homes. Groups are also available via telephone and internet, making support groups accessible for nearly every patient.
In-Person Support Groups
In-person support groups are often offered by local hospitals and cancer centers and may be led by patients, psychologists or nurses. These groups often meet on a weekly or monthly basis and are generally more structured. Other groups may be organized by local churches, patients or caregivers.
CLICK HERE to find a partial list of in-person support groups offered in California.
Online Support Groups
Online support groups and message boards offer a travel-free way for mesothelioma patients to engage with a support network. The internet can offer a vast amount of information and online support groups give patients a venue to ask questions of others and share their experiences. These support groups allow patients to connect with others as frequently or infrequently as they would like.
The American Cancer Society is a helpful resource for finding online support groups.
Phone Based Support
Phone based support resources like the Cancer Support Helpline are available through many cancer centers and societies to provide answers to questions, dietary support, assistance in locating local resources or just a listening ear.
These phone based programs often offer flexible hours to allow patients quick access to answers and counselors.