Cancer Care

The South African Society of Stomates

May 26, 2022 Word for Word Media 0Comment

We learn more about The South African Society of Stomates (SASS) and how they are building the community of ostomates (people who’ve had an ostomy, a surgical operation to create an opening in the body for the discharge of body wastes).

Who is SASS? 

The South African Society of Stomates (SASS) is a non-profit organisation formed by ostomates across Southern Africa to facilitate a holistic approach to ostomy patient care by bridging the gap between the private and public sectors whilst advocating for the rights of fellow ostomates throughout the country. 

SASS aims to advocate and align the standard of stoma care and services across South Africa which will be applicable to both the private and public sectors. Thereby aligning to the global standards set out by The International Ostomy Association (IOA). 

What we set out to achieve with your help 


Medically reviewed surgery-specific information. Making sure you have access to the best possible care. Ostomy pouch management tips, diet and nutrition, skin care, sexuality, travel tips and more.


Support to you and your family whilst you transition into your new normal. You will have access to a local peer support group, where you can get answers to questions, or connect with our Facebook community and more.


We aim to advocate the standard of stoma care across private and public sectors, whilst aligning with the global standards set out by The International Ostomy Association (IOA).

Download the Survival Guide Booklet

In this book, you will discover what a stoma is, the types of stomas as well as the journey leading up to and after surgery. We will also explore some practical tips that ostomates across the world have been using to become more accustomed to their new normal. We will also share with you your rights as an ostomate in the type of care and support you deserve.

What are your rights as an ostomate?

The ostomate shall:

  • Receive preoperative counselling to ensure that they are fully aware of the benefits of the operation and the essential facts about living with a stoma.
  • Have a well-constructed stoma placed at an appropriate site, and with full and proper consideration to the comfort of the patient.
  • Receive experienced and professional medical support and stoma nursing care in the preoperative and postoperative period both in hospital and in their community.
  • Receive support and information for the benefit of the family, personal carers and friends to increase their understanding of the conditions and adjustments which are necessary for achieving a satisfactory standard of life with a stoma.
  • Receive full and impartial information about all relevant supplies and products available in their country.
  • Have unrestricted access to a variety of affordable ostomy products.
  • Be given information about their National Ostomy Association and the services and support which can be provided.
  • Be protected against all forms of discrimination.
  • Receive assurance that personal information regarding their ostomy surgery will be treated with discretion and confidentiality to maintain privacy; and that no information about their medical condition will be disclosed by anyone possessing this information, to an entity that engages in the manufacture, sales or distribution of ostomy or related products; nor shall it be disclosed to any person that will benefit, directly or indirectly, because of their relation to the commercial ostomy market without the expressed consent of the ostomate.

*Issued by the IOA Coordination Committee June 1993: Revised June 1997 Revised by World Council 2004, 200

For more information please visit