Meso Foundation launches peer-to-peer support group for mesothelioma patients, caregivers

1 May 2014 by under News, Organizations

MARF logo square Meso Foundation launches peer to peer support group for mesothelioma patients, caregiversThe Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation (Meso Foundation) has launched a new support group aimed at providing mesothelioma victims and their families and/or caregivers a way to easily connect with others who are also struggling with the -caused cancer. Called , the program is available to people at all stages of the disease, and provides opportunities both for those who need help and those who feel they would like to help others.

The Meso Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to finding a cure for mesothelioma and eliminating the disease by funding peer-reviewed mesothelioma research. To date, the Meso Foundation has awarded nearly $9 million in research grants. In addition, the Foundation provides a network of support for mesothelioma patients and caregivers through educational, advocacy and outreach programs.

Mesothelioma is a rare but deadly form of cancer that most often affects the lining of the lungs or abdomen. Very rarely, it may also affect the heart. Mesothelioma is linked to asbestos exposure. When microscopic asbestos fibers are released into the air, they may be inhaled or ingested, and lead to the development of mesothelioma. There is currently no known cure for meso.

Because the disease is rare – only affecting about 3,500 people each year in the United States – patients may feel isolated and alone. Meso-Connect will identify patients and/or their caregivers, screens participants, and puts people together. Newly diagnosed patients can talk to someone who has been through what they are facing, and Meso Warriors (survivors and advocates) can provide hope and direction to others.

Mary Hesdorffer, executive director of the Meso Foundation, explains, “Knowing that someone else has gone through a similarly grueling experience makes patients and their families know that it can be done. The service can be helpful during all stages of a mesothelioma diagnosis.”

People wishing to take part in the Meso-Connect program must first register with the Meso Foundation for screening. At this time, they can also indicate whether they would like to help others. Training will be provided for “helpers” before they are assigned to help other patients.

For more information, visit the Meso Foundation online at

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