Support Groups are Good Medicine

NEWARK—With many diseases and conditions, there are different factors that enhance healing. Research has shown that stress reduction and promotion of coping skills through a support group may be beneficial to the healing process. In addition, support groups act as a source of information and education for patients and their families.

“The goal of support groups is to assist in strengthening patient coping skills and to provide a network of information to both patients and their loved ones,” says Valerie Schacter Cappello, MSW, LCSW, Lung & Heart Transplant Social Worker at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center’s Lung Transplant Program. Newark Beth Israel Medical Center and Children’s Hospital of New Jersey offer a variety of support groups for patients and their families. “Support groups increase a sense of well-being for both the patient and family members.”


Benefits of a Support Group
In addition to having a group with members who can relate to what you are going through, support groups offer a variety of benefits.

Support groups offer:

  • A place for people to give and receive both emotional and practical support
  • Access to information about medical treatments, research and strategies
  • Shared knowledge about public policy, legal resources, privacy laws, and protection from discrimination
  • Greater knowledge about researchers in that field and the latest news

Support Groups at NBIMC and CHNJ

The Breast Cancer Support Group is sponsored by the Frederick B. Cohen, MD, Cancer and Blood Disorders Center. The group meets twice a month in the Oncology Conference Room on D-2 of Newark Beth Israel Medical Center, 201 Lyons Avenue, Newark. Remaining dates and times this year are: Wed, Oct. 21, 10-11 am; Thurs, Oct. 22, 5-6 p.m.; Wed. Nov. 18, 10-11 am; Thurs, Nov. 19, 5-6 p.m.; Wed, Dec. 16, 10-11 am; Thurs, Dec. 17, 5-6 p.m. Call (973) 926-7230 for more information.

Newark Beth Israel Medical Center sponsors a Lupus Support Group, open to individuals with lupus, their family members and friends. The Lupus Support Group helps individuals coping with the disease, which can cause inflammation, pain and damage to the body. The group meets on the first Saturday of every month, from 11 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. in the Administrative Board Room (1st floor, Old Main Lobby) at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center, 201 Lyons Avenue, Newark.  For further information, contact Nekia Jones, (973) 926-7811, or

The “Hearty Hearts” Heart Transplant (Pre and Post) Educational Support Group is hosted by The Heart Transplant Department at NBIMC. The group meets the first Thursday of every month from 6:30 – 8:30 pm in the Corporate Board Room located on the 1st floor in the ABC building at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center.  Also, a “Weekly Heart Transplant Support Group” meets every Thursdays from 10:30 am until noon in the Kimberly Room, located between the A6 and B6 units. Call 973- 926-3178 for more information.

A Pulmonary Hypertension Support Group is held by the Lung Transplant Department. The group is held the 3rd Monday of the month from 10 am – noon in the Danzis Auditorium. For the month of October only the support group will be held on Tuesday, October 20 from 8:30am – 3pm along with a free lung health education day event in the Parsonnet Danzis auditorium.  The group will have speakers scheduled with breakfast and lunch provided. One continuing education credit is given for pharms, pharm techs, dieticians, case managers and respiratory therapists. Call 973- 926-3178.

Young Teens Group (Ages 14-16) offers teens a chance to share ideas about a topics including: Social Skills, Peer Pressure, Nutrition, Improving Self-Esteem, Job Interview Tips, Facebook/Myspace/Twitter Status. The group meets every Wednesday from September 23 through December 16 from 3:45 pm- 5:00 pm at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center, 201 Lyons Ave., Newark, Bldg. J 3rd floor. Contact Marsha McMillan, CCLS, for more information at (973) 926-4332.

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