Hi Heather. My name is Brian and I live in Childers.
My experience of the regional/capital city linkages in our region has been very positive.
About three weeks ago, I woke up with severe chest palns. I went straight to Childers hospital, thinking heart attack. They checked me out and advised me to go home and pay close attention to my symptoms.
My GP helped me manage the pain and then referred me to a specialist in B'berg. Luckily I have private insurance, however I believe that when the illness warrants it, the public system is equally responsive.
One specialist checked me out for kidney stones, etc; nothing there. Then he called in a colleague for bone marrow tests; bingo, acute myeloid leukemia. In computing terms, my blood production system has a bug in the software, and it needs a reset.
The RFDS flew me down to Brisbane; excellent care, all the way.
In Brisbane, I was moved quite seamlessly into world class care. I am on a chemo course, with a large array of specialists tracking all manner of parameters; a great example of measurement being the key to good management.
So that is my experience. I am also trying to stay proactive in my recovery, by asking lots of questions and standing my ground if something doesn't make horse sense to me. It's my life, so I had better pay attention.
However, the overall system is peopled by some really dedicated heroes, who really know their stuff. I see it as my job to work with them, especially by cultivating my optimism.
I really hope your sister's journey is equally positive.
Please pm me if I can be of any further help.
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This week I went to my GP in Childers Q with chest pains. Now I am in hospital in Brisbane about to start chemo, tomorrow morning.
The doctors and nurses have been really free with the information and that has been really helpful. I am writing down all my questions and then asking for a semi-formal q&a session with them. This has led to some really good sessions where i have felt in control of the agenda; I am really getting the info I need.
I have always been interested in the mind-body connection. So I am also exploring what this disease means within the broader context of my life.
Lately, I have been feeling rather useless and powerless, especially as I could not find job. So, perhaps there are some linkages between these depressed feelings and the leukemia. I will keep an open mind.
I am feeling very optimistic about my recovery, based mainly on what my doctors have told me. They seem to be really committed to the job as well as being very rigorous about the science. I feel blessed to be in such good hands.
Best wishes to everyone else on this site. Through the power of the internet, maybe we can help each other.
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Cancer Council NSW would like to acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land on which we live and work.We would also like to pay respect to elders past and present and extend that respect to all other Aboriginal people.