News Archive

Summer is Just Around the Corner

I hope you can all join us for our last meeting prior to summer break, this Tuesday, June 4, 2013. If you miss this meeting, remember we'll have a summer break during July and August, but meetings will resume in September (Tuesday, September 3, 2012 to be exact.)

Also, see the notice in the newsletter, dues for 2013-2014 are due between June and August, so remember to fill out your renewal form and mail it to Ruth.

Enjoy the heat, humidity, bugs.... no wait, I mean the sun, fun, and vacations that a North Carolina summer brings!

Happy New Year, Welcome Back!!!

I hope you can all join us for the first meeting of 2013. Due to the holiday falling on the first Tuesday, this month's meeting will be on Tuesday, January 8 in the regular place at Rex. Let's get the new year started right!

Summer Break is Over, Welcome Back!!!

I hope you can all join us for the first meeting after our Summer Break (be prepared with your "What I did over the summer" stories.) We'll be at Rex on Tuesday, September 4 (yes, that's the day after Labor Day, so don't forget) in the regular place. Let's kick the new season off right!

Please note that the problem with our contact form has been fixed. If you have tried to use the "Contact Us" option and received an error, I would like to apologize for the inconvenience and suggest you try once more. Thanks.
– Webmaster

Last Meeting Before Summer Break

I hope you can all join us for the last meeting before our Summer Break. We'll be at Rex on Tuesday, June 5 in the regular place. After that, we'll skip July and August, but we'll be back in September.

Reminder: Visitation Training

This is just a quick reminder that training for ostomy visitors will be held this Saturday (January 28) from 10:00am-12:00pm at Rex Hospital in room 1209. Enter through the Patient Tower entrance and go down one floor (Level 1) then follow the signs.

New Year, New Beginnings

We'll be kicking off 2012 with our first meeting on January 3 (the first day back at work for many of us) so don't forget to join us at Rex at 7:30pm.

Speaking of new beginnings, our new newsletter editors have delivered a great first newsletter of 2012, check it out by clicking here.

Welcome Back!

Well, summer break is over and our new season is about to begin. To get things started, we have a message from our president Jennifer Higdon:

President’s Message
September 2011

I hope everyone had a great summer. Despite the heat, it has flown by. Since I saw you all last, my girls are now 10 months old and are standing and gibber jabbering like crazy. It is so neat to watch the girls grow up, but it is happening so fast. Speaking of things happening fast... this summer, my husband, Chad got the phone call he has been waiting for. He was interviewed and hired by FedEx (his dream company) as a pilot instructor. Everything happened so fast, and we are going to be permanently relocating to Memphis, Tennessee. Therefore, it is with great sadness that I must step down as President and newsletter editor of the Triangle Area Ostomy Association. During my absence over the last year, VP Jeff Burcham, has done a great job at making sure the meetings were moving forward and informative. I appreciate his help and all the other board members assistance. I know that all of you will help continue to help this group grow and focus on supporting long time and new members. It has been a pleasure serving as your President, former VP, and newsletter editor for these 7 years. The time sure has gone fast, and I am so thankful to have met you all.

I'm not sure if I will make it to the September meeting, as I am house-hunting in Tennessee. But I will certainly try to make a meeting before my family fully moves.

Jennifer Higdon, President

Last Meeting Before Summer Break!

It's amazing how time flies. Here we are with just one more meeting before our summer break. We hope you'll join us for our June meeting before we enter the busy vacation/yardwork/pool season.

Our speaker this month will be Joanna Burgess, RN, BSN, CWOCN, WOC Nurse at WakeMed Cary. She will be discussing "Summer Travels and Trials".

Bring in the New Year!

Hello Everyone! Don't let our first meeting of the year slip up on you! Please join us Tuesday January 4 for our first meeting of 2011!

December Meeting Social and Baby Shower!

Join us Tuesday night December 7 for our year-end social and as a special treat, we'll be having a BABY SHOWER for Jen and her little girls. Please bring goodies to share. Drinks and paper products will be provided. The party starts at 7:30pm in the Rex Hospital Surgical Waiting Room.

November Meeting Update

Join us Tuesday night November 2 to hear our speaker, Tom Rinkacs, ConvaTec Great Comebacks Award Winner.Same time, same place (7:30pm Rex Hospital Surgical Waiting Room.)

Also, please note that due to scheduling conflicts, the Visitor Training has been postponed until Spring.

Ostomy Jeopardy Is Back!

Join us Tuesday night October 5 for our Ostomy-themed version of the popular game "Jeapordy". Learn a little, laugh a lot, and meet some great folks! Same time, same place (7:30pm Rex Hospital Surgical Waiting Room.)

Summer Break is Over, We're Back on Schedule

Our 2010-2011 season will start on Tuesday, September 7, yup, that's right, the day after Labor Day, so don't let it slip by you in all the holiday madness! We will be having an ICE CREAM SOCIAL, so you don't want to miss this one. See the newsletter for details.

Last Meeting Before Summer Break

We're ending the year on a high note. Terri Kuczynski will be our speaker again! Those of you who have heard Terri speak know that she is a bright, dynamic speaker that everyone enjoys hearing. Those of you who haven't met Terri really should join us for this meeting!

Join us in May to Discuss Social Security Disability with Sonya Withers

Sonya will be discussing Social Security and SSA Disability as they may relate to our members. She is a former Disability Examiner with the US Social Security Administration, and currently works for a non-profit agency helping indigent patients apply for disability. The discussion should be interesting, and I'm sure the question-and-answer portion will be lively.

Join us in April to Hear Dr. Vig

Due to bad weather, we didn't have a meeting in February, and the turnout in March was very small, so Dr. Vig has graciously agreed to speak at our April meeting. Please join us there, we'd love to have a great turnout to show Dr. Vig our appreciation, and I'm certain everyone will enjoy his presentation!

Welcome to 2010!

Help get the year started right by joining us at the January meeting (Tuesday, January 5). Our speaker this month will be Ashley Honeycutt, dietician to discuss Healthy Eating Habits for the New Year.

New Officers Elected

At the June meeting, new officers were elected to the TOA Board. Dan Wiley stepped down as President and Jen Higdon was elected as the new President. Jeff Burcham was elected to fill the Vice-President office left vacant by Jen's election. Bonnie Sessums and Ruth Rhodes were re-elected to their offices of Secretary and Tresurer respectively. Here is a picture of the new officers along with your humble webmaster.

Officers (Left to right: Jen Higdon, President; Jeff Burcham, Vice-President; Bonnie Sessums, Secretary; Ruth Rhodes, Treasurer; Ed Withers, Webmaster.)

Summer Break is Over, Back to the Fun!

Our summer break is over, and our next meeting is Tuesday September 1. We are starting the 2009-2010 season with a new president and vice-president, we will have a report from the national convention, and based on the pictures, some interesting questions for Jen about EXACTLY WHAT WENT ON at the convention. :-)

Read the latest issue of the newsletter for more information.

End-of-Season Meeting, Ice Cream Social, and Election in June!

Please join us on Tuesday, June 2, 2009, for the last meeting prior to our summer break. Rather than our normal meeting with a speaker, this month we will be holding an Ice Cream Social: (Jen is bringing the ice cream, everyone else brings toppings) AND Elections will be held for President, Vice President, and Secretary.

Check out the new Newsletter Layout!

Thanks to Jen Higdon, the online newsletter layout has been reworked so that as you read it, the pages appear in correct numerical order (i.e. you'll see pages 2 and 3, then 4 and 5, etc. Prior issues were being delivered in the form to be printed and mailed, but it made it hard to read the newsletter online. Jen is now creating two versions, one for print, and one that is easy to read online.

Welcome to 2009!

Well, it's cold outside, but we keep the meeting room warm, so join us for one of our monthly meetings. Our vendor night is coming up on March 3rd, so that would be a great meeting to join us for the first time, or the first time in a while! Of course all our regulars are welcome as well. See ya then!

Summer Break is Over, Back to the Fun!

Our summer break is over, and our next meeting is Tuesday September 2. That's right, the day after Labor Day, so don’t let it sneak up on you. We have a great discussion meeting planned. Read the latest issue of the newsletter for more information.

Contact Request Form Fixed!

We had a problem with our contact request form earlier in the year, and I thought I had fixed it, but I was wrong. As of today (August 29,2008) it is once again working. If you tried to send a contact request and received an error, please try it again.
I would like to apologize for any inconvenience this has caused.
— Ed

Schedule Change

Our May meeting is our annual Vendors Fair. Please attend and take the opportunity to see the new products being released and to ask questions about your current vendor, products you use, or products you are interested in trying.

Schedule Change

Due to the New Years Holiday, our January 2008 meeting has been postponed until the SECOND Tuesday, January 8, 2008 at 7:30. Please join us then.

Starting a New Season Right

Congratulations Jen!

As the 2007-2008 season gets started at the Triangle Ostomy Association, our trusty vice-president is showing us how to kick things off right. See the newsletter for her report on the UOA conference. On top of that, she had time and energy to apply for and win TWO scholarships so she can start graduate school this fall. More on that in the newsletter too.


by Jen Higdon

The Triangle Area Ostomy Association would really like to thank, Tom Rinkacs, our speaker from last month. He had a very inspiring story of living with Crohns and an ostomy. If you missed this meeting, it was a great one.

When Tom was here, he spoke about Marvin Bush (Former President Bush’s son) who has an ostomy. Read more about that on page 4 of this newsletter. For more of what Tom had to say, please see our Minutes on page 3.

Thanks again Tom for a great presentation!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Newsletter "News" ???

We're two months into 2007 and this is the first "News" update of the year.

In case you hadn't noticed, our Newsletter has been written by Jennifer Higdon since March of 2006, but the News page hadn't been updated to reflect her work. I'd like to offer an apology for that oversight on my (the webmaster's) part, and a Big Thank You! to Jennifer for all her hard work on the newsletter.

Now, I've finally gotten busy and done some updates to the website, so I hope all of you will get busy and write up some contributions for Jennifer to use in the newsletter. She's always looking for helpful hints, interesting events, unusual experiences, and uplifting reflections. So please send her your tips, articles, stories, and ideas.

(You can use our Member Mail page if you don't have Jennifer's contact information.)

New Name, Same Great Group

With the dissolution of the United Ostomy Association in September of 2005, our group needed to change its name. At the January 2006 member meeting, several possible names were considered and after a vote, the name Triangle Ostomy Association was chosen along with the tag line Serving the Ostomy and J-Pouch Community.

New and Improved Newsletter

Thanks to the help of a new member (Anke Gassen) the newsletter for our chapter has been completely revamped. Anke has taken the good work that Jennifer Higdon started with our newsletter earlier in the year and added quite a visual punch. In addition to the improvements to the printed version of the newsletter, there is a parallel HTML version for easy web reading. The contents are the same, but the HTML version is easier to read online. If you want to check it out, go to our Newsletters page where you can find links to the downloadable version of the printed newsletter in .pdf format and the new HTML format as well.

If you loved the newsletter as produced for so many years by Ms. Lula Mangum, don't worry, the heart and soul of the newsletter is still there, it's just been given a little pick-me-up.

Thanks again to Lula for producing the newsletter for so long; thanks to Jennifer for keeping it going when Lula stepped down from editorship; and thanks to Anke for taking over monthly production of the newsletter. Jennifer will continue to help Anke produce the contents of the newsletter, and we might even sweet-talk Lula into contributing some copy as well on occasion. Of course, Anke and Jennifer will always be looking for other contributing authors, so if you have any ideas or content for the newsletter, please contact one of them. (You can use our Member Mail page if you'd like.)

J-Pouch / Ileoanal Pouch Support Group

The Raleigh Chapter of the United Ostomy Association would like to announce the formation of a new support group for people with J-Pouch or other types of Continent Diversions such as Kock pouch, BICR pouch, and other related internal pouches. This group will meet on the first Tuesday of each month at 7:30pm. Meetings will be held in Raleigh, in the Surgical Waiting Room near the main entrance to Rex Hospital. This is the same time and location as the regular UOA Raleigh Chapter ostomy support group meetings. The two meetings will often be held separately but on occasion will be the same meeting as member interest and speakers vary.

All individuals with J-Pouches or other continent diversions, caregivers for those with continent diversions, potential candidates for continent diversions, or others with an interest in the subject are welcome to attend these meetings.

Please note that while the main UOA chapter does not meet during July or August, the J-Pouch / Continent Diversion Network group intends to meet each month, year-round.

For more information, please contact:

Dan Wiley: 919-477-8363
Lora Edgar: 919-451-1624


We have recently added a number of flyers for the Raleigh Chapter of the UOA, the UOA Continent Diversion Network, and the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation. You can find these documents on our Resources page.

United Ostomy Associations of America