What We Offer

We make no charge to patients or their families for any support and advice provided. The OPA can only maintain its vital service through trust donations and other fundraising activities generated by the community it serves.

It costs the OPA several hundred pounds per day to run the national telephone helpline, provide regional support meetings, train volunteers and produce our support literature.

Telephone Helpline

0121 704 9860

Available 9am to 3pm Monday to Friday. Our friendly, fully trained staff are here to help you however you are affected by oesophageal or gastric cancer and at all stages.

Support Meetings

These are held around the UK throughout the year, inevitably most patients attending these meetings have had, or are going to have surgery. All Patients are most welcome but this emphasis is to be expected in discussions.

Support Groups in England and Wales

Support Groups in Scotland

Support Nationwide

The Oesophageal Patients Association (OPA) is a national charity, providing quality information for patients, their carers and family affected by oesophageal or gastric cancers.

Whatever stage of your illness - recently diagnosed or some years on, facing treatment by chemotherapy, radiotherapy, surgery or palliative care - we can help. We completely understand your worries and fears and can give support you need in order to achieve the best possible quality of life.

The OPA was founded on the principle of patients helping others by sharing their experiences. 

Group Support

By sharing experiences and discussing our issues and problems, we are often able to help each other overcome areas of common convern.

Support meetings: These are held around the UK throughout the year, inevitably most patients attending these meetings have had, or are going to have surgery. The OPA's aim is to help new patients, families and carers to cope with difficulties arising as a result of treatment, giving support and encouraging patients to achieve a good quality of life.

Our patient support branches provide the opportunity for patients to meet former patients, some of whom are leading relatively normal lives; to air their converns and discuss problems with members of the medical profession, including consultant surgeons, gastroenterologists, dieticians, physiotherapists and clinical nurse specialists who speak at the meetings on a voluntary basis.

One to One Support

We also offer patients the opportunity to be able to speak directly to a former patient and gain reassurance that life can again be very good.

From personal experience, we know that the first few weeks and months before and after treatment can be challenging.

Most patients find it helpful and encouraging to talk to someone who has experienced similar symptoms and has undergone the same course(s) of treatment. Our volunteers (all of whom are current or former patients themselves) are on hand and willing to offer you support, encouragement and reassurance. 

Whilst we do not offer counselling or medical advice, we can offer general guidance and suggestions based on our own experiences. From questions to ask your GP, to tips on what to eat... plus a lot more.

We will be happy to put you in touch with someone local to talk to, or alternatively, you can contact our national helpline on:- 0121 704 9860 or by email: enquiries@opa.org.uk (Mon-Fri, 9-3)

Email

You can always email us a simple query, but if the questions are in depth please call the helpline. Email us at enquiries@opa.org.uk

Newsletters

Sign up for our twice yearly Newsletter with articles of interest and latest news of treatments.

Download and read our latest newsletters on our Newsletters Page.

Booklets and Leaflets

Whether you have had surgery or not our medically approved booklets are available at no cost. 

  • A Guide to Life after Oesophageal/Gastric Surgery
  • Swallowing Nutrition When It’s Difficult
  • General Leaflet
  • Factsheets

To download this literature visit our Download Page

Restaurant Cards

Restaurant cards asking for a small portion of food due to a medical condition are available in English, Dutch, French, German, Greek, Portuguese, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish and Turkish.

For more information on our restaurant cards call us on 0121 704 9860 or download from our Download Page.

Email Newsletter

Sign up to the OPA e-newsletter for the latest news updates via email.

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