The Ostomy Association of Los Angeles (OALA) began in 1956 as the Ileostomy Association of Los Angeles (IALA) serving the Greater Los Angeles area.
Though we started small, only about 15 members, IALA quickly grew as word of the organization spread. In those days there were no nurses who specialized in Ostomy care so it was IALA members who provided guidance and support to new ostomates.
In 1960 fifteen Ostomy support groups from around the country began talking about forming a national group. A meeting was held in 1962 leading to the formation of the United Ostomy Association (UOA). The first UOA convention was held in Los Angeles in 1963.
By the late 60’s membership had grown to over 600 and IALA had an office with paid staff. In 1975 it was decided to expand membership to all types of ostomates and the name of the group was changed to the Ostomy Association of Los Angeles (OALA).
Although the internet and Wound Ostomy Nurses can provide information and training, only another Ostomate can tell you what it is like to live with an Ostomy. OALA has continued to serve all Ostomates by sharing an understanding of what it is like to live with an Ostomy on a daily basis. Whether you have an Ileostomy, Colostomy or Urostomy, we are here to help. YOU ARE NOT ALONE!