Japan Ostomy Association, Inc. (JOA)

What is Ostomy ?

What is Ostomy ?

An ostomy is a temporary or permanent surgical opening made in the abdominal wall due to disease of or injury to the rectum or bladder. The opening created on the skin is called a stoma and serves as an exit for urine or stool (or both).
Because conscious control over urination or excretion is lost, an external pouching system (called an appliance) is worn to collect body wastes. The word "ostomate" refers to people who have had this surgery.

What is JOA ?

The first group of ostomates in Japan, called "GORYOHKAI", was organized in 1969; with the goal of mutual support and encouragement in order to overcome their stoma care problems and adverse living conditions. In 1989, this mission was handed down to the current JOA and expanded to include quality of life issues and promotion of the welfare of ostomates in the community.
JOA is a volunteer-based, non-profit corporation approved by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare of Japan, and contributing internationally as an affiliation of IOA (International Ostomy Association) and its regional association, AOA (Asian Ostomy Association). JOA is also a member association of various coalitions of domestic organizations for disabled.

Our Activities

We have been developing various activities concerned with stoma care and related problems for better quality of life of Japanese ostomates based on "For Ourselves" principle.

  • Mutual support and encouragement - sharing information and know-how on stoma care, and how to lead active and full lives
  • Education and training by medical professionals - lectures, training courses and counseling
  • Interaction with and education of national and local authorities and the general public in order to increase public awareness about ostomy surgery and its impact on people's lives.

Join Us

  • Not only will you receive support and encouragement from people who have an ostomy and health care professionals specializing in ostomy care, but joining the JOA will also provide you with some practical benefits.
  • Your involvement not only helps you, but it also helps move all Japanese people with ostomies toward a better quality of life.

We hope you will join us in making your life with an ostomy a more comfortable and fruitful one.

-Joy will be doubled, and sorrow halved by sharing with fellows-