Support Groups London Support Group London Support Group A very warm welcome to the home page of the London Patients Group of HCUK based at University College London Hospital. Our group, the Barrett’s Oesophagus Support Group, was formed in December 2012, initiated by Sally Thorpe, the Clinical Nurse specialist at UCLH. Sally’s depth of experience, her extensive contacts and her close personal involvement are invaluable. We have been formally recognised as a valued and appreciated member of a Partnership Group within the Hospital with a close link to the Voluntary Services department. We see our primary purpose as to provide information and pastoral care to patients and carers in the London area to complement the exemplary care provided by the medical team at UCLH and other hospitals, and the wider HCUK charity network. Our regular activities usually take the following forms: All new patients are routinely informed of the existence of our group in the hospital and are encouraged to contact us by phone or email, at any time, to learn about the group, and discuss any questions they may have informally and confidentially, as fellow patient to patient We attend regular clinics at UCLH, usually on the 1st and 4th Wednesdays of the month, offering the facility to patients and carers attending the hospital to come and have refreshments and a chat with us, again seeking an opportunity to listen to any concerns, and to share our experience of Barrett’s which collectively is now a huge bank of practical knowledge We hold open patients’ meetings at the Macmillan Centre, UCLH, on a quarterly basis, on the first Wednesday of the month, from 5 – 7pm, which members have found to be very helpful, friendly and supportive. We regularly invite guest speakers to these meetings to discuss specific aspects of Barrett’s, including our key consultants, other medical professionals such as dieticians, pharmacists, researchers and specialist nursing staff Members are also regularly invited to seminars, symposiums and conferences usually at the hospital for professionals and patients, to participate, and in particular to put over the patient’s perspective. These are great opportunities to learn more about the condition, as well as more about research and future developments. For example, early in 2020 HCUK and the Hospital organised the ‘Upper GI Symposium’ which was of great interest to Barrett’s patients. New patients are particularly welcome, and we hope you will find the group is a great way to understand more about Barrett’s, share practical advice from our collective experience as patients and keep up to date on the fast changing developments in research and treatments. If you would like to talk to anyone about your Barrett’s diagnosis or if you want further information please contact Stuart Barritt Acting Chair [email protected] 07905 154153 Allan Weaire Secretary [email protected] 07817 524650 Alison Wood Treasurer [email protected] 07833 792811 Cyril Cleary Former Chair [email protected] 07935 391828 Sadly, due to the COVID-19 pandemic our planned April 2020 meeting had to be cancelled. Professor Rebecca Fitzgerald, a Professor of Cancer Prevention at the University of Cambridge, and a Research Professor for the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) was due to talk to us at this meeting. We will look to arrange for Rebecca to attend one of our future meetings once lock down restrictions are eased and allow us to meet in a group setting.