When the going gets tough, kindness is the most meaningful thing. Over the years, we've found a common thread amongst families, friends and the NHS, of people being so generous and kind with their time in support of others. In particular we want to thank Richard Owen, Sheraz Markar and Bruno Sgromo for their continued support of OOSO, when their own working lives as consultant surgeons are all-time consuming, high pressure roles, leaving precious little space for family life and proper down time. Yet they find time to think about us, OOSO, and our community of patients, families and friends. 

And of course we thank everyone at the NHS: doctors, theatre and ward nurses and assistants, radiologists, physios, dieticians, all the behind the scenes admin staff, business managers and planners, finance and human resources, building maintenance teams, the all important porters, kitchen and security staff, and not to forget volunteers, who help visitors feel welcome and find where they are supposed to be. It's quite an incredible thing 'the NHS' - without which, there's a lot of us that wouldn't be here today, or had an opportunity to live a few more happy years. So we keep saying 'thank you', and we mean it.

OGOS Preview

A few weeks ago, on 20th April, Anne and I were invited to present on behalf of OOSO, at the inaugural conference 'OGOS' the Oxford Gastro-Oesophageal Symposium, held at St Catherine's College in Oxford. There were 19 presentations in total, from some of the most prestigious clinicians across Europe, talking about the latest innovations in treatment and surgery for oesophageal and stomach cancers. We were honoured to have the last word, giving our patients' perspective, and thanking them for their life long work and dedication, towards better treatments and ultimately a cure for these horrible cancers.  

We'll let you know as soon as the presentations and live recordings are posted on the official OGOS website, but in the meantime, if you're interested, from notes compiled on the day you can take a sneak preview here of some of the highlights.

Teacher’s PET

At our recent zoom, Richard Owen gave us an excellent presentation telling us how PET scans work and why they are so important. We had a really good discussion afterwards, so thank you everyone for joining in. On this occasion we recorded Richard's presentation, so if you wish to see it you can view it here.

Zooming Ahead

At our next session, scheduled for Tuesday 13th June at 7pm, our theme will be ‘rehabilitation’ and post treatment fitness and recovery. One of the Churchill Hospital's physiotherapists, Dane, will be giving us a short presentation about how to prepare for treatment and possibly surgery, and some tips around recovery. We’ll also have Dr Pierre Montauban joining us to tell us briefly about a novel project designed to monitor our own fitness during treatment and recovery. And we have two former patients who have kindly agreed to share some of their top tips and ideas around recovery. It'll be a busy hour, full of useful stuff - try not to miss it.

Last call

Just as a reminder, we're meeting for lunch at Dobbies Garden Centre, Hyde Road, Stratton St Margaret, SN2 7SE, near to Swindon, next Tuesday 16th May at 12:30. You are very welcome to join us, we have tables booked, it's a nice venue for a light bite and catch up. If you'd like to come along and haven't yet confirmed please drop me a line here so we can finalise numbers.

Onwards and upwards!
Best wishes

Matt Carter
Chair of the Trustees
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