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Support Groups

"No one can heal a burn survivor like a burn survivor."

At West Penn Burn Center, we recognize that healing physically from a burn injury is only one step in the process of rehabilitation and recovery. A burn injury can have an impact on many aspects of one’s life whether it is an emotional, physical, or social impact. Who better to understand the potential challenges facing a burn survivor than someone who has been through that same experience, another burn survivor?

Burn Concern Peer Support group was founded by burn survivors and their loved ones based on their personal recognition that recovery doesn’t end on the day of discharge from a burn center; emotionally it may only be the beginning. Burn Concern is an all-volunteer peer-based support group. The four founding directors have a combined 45+ years of experience as burn survivors and family members of burn survivors. This group offers lifelong support to others on their journey of recovery.


Burn Concern holds meetings at 2pm on the third Saturday of each month. Meetings are held at West Penn Hospital in the conference room of the West Penn Burn Center. These meetings are open to all current Burn Center patients and to any burn survivors and family members. Light refreshments are served.

This peer support group may provide the first opportunity for a burn survivor to meet and socialize with others who have experienced a burn trauma. Group members discuss personal accounts of survival, recovery and reintroduction into the real world. Meeting attendees are welcomed to share their stories or simply to listen to the stories of others. Meetings are casual. The setting is comfortable. Active participation is purely voluntary . Support group meetings can help other affected individuals to feel less isolated in their experiences.

An alternate opportunity for meeting participation is by way of a phone conference line; this is called a “meet-me” line. There is no cost incurred for use of the meeting conference line. To participate on the conference line: call 724.444.7444 and, after the prompt, enter call code “123574#” followed by “1#”.


Social outings and events are being planned for burn survivors and family members from the western Pennsylvania region. The outings and events will offer another venue to meet, greet and learn. Watch for more information!

Burn Concern’s 5th Annual Burn Survivor’s Thanksgiving Potluck Luncheon
Please join us for a FAMILY day of burn survival healing, sharing & support as we take a moment to be thankful while on our road to recovery so we don’t just survive, but THRIVE!

Click here to learn more.

One-on-One Patient Support

The four volunteer directors are committed to supporting burn survivors and their family members as well as individuals affected by skin conditions that mimic burn injuries (Steven-Johnson Syndrome/TENS). That support can be provided through personal visits, email exchanges and telephone conversations. The monthly Burn Concern meeting is one more way of providing support. “We want to help you through your recovery journey. We can relate “100 percent” and can help you deal with the issues you may face”

Contact Us

If you haven't gotten support on your journey, please don't continue alone. Whether you have been a survivor for 1 year or 30 years, it's never too late to get the support you need.

We welcome and appreciate hearing from burn survivors and/or their family members. We'd love to hear about your experiences. We also welcome new volunteers! Please feel free to email us at for more information or call us:

Beth Ann Smith

Dennis Gillin

We suggest the following Web sites for more information: