Great news for cancer patients and caregivers – Grace is back after a long absence from her not for profit Foundation work – now with her own health promotion charity – Integrated Cancer Solutions – located at Hope Island, Gold Coast Queensland. A generous donor who recognised Grace’s contribution to her previous organisation, the Gawler Foundation; has gifted funds so that once again, Grace Gawler’s services can be accessed by cancer patients and care-givers.
With services including support groups, consultations, residential programs (small numbers of participants for individualised help); the Trust and Centre will soon make its mark on the map. Grace is keen to share the following story because it gives credence to the necessity at times to help patients find their solutions outside of Australia. The new Trust already has strong professional liaisons with local and national integrative doctors as well as integrated oncology clinics around the globe – in particular, Germany.
Grace Says: “For 13 years I had to deal with my own life threatening situation – a result of unexpected complications evident after a routine surgical procedure in 1997. Concurrently my marriage ended abruptly and I was without support. Like many of the thousands of patients I had counselled; I was now in ‘hot seat”as a patient with no obvious options for recovery. Initially, my paralysed colon led to obstructionsand eventually colon removal – both large and small bowel were affected. I underwent more surgeries for ileostomies, colostomies. My life quality was dreadful. Frustrated, I researched journals for insights on what might be possible to aid my recovery. In 2003 I travelled to Holland where I had a “world-first” bionic procedure that restored function to my tiny amount of remaining colon. I lived overseas that year – when I returned to Australia I owned nothing and had accrued lots of debt; however I was very rich because the Dutch surgeons gave me my life back! When the battery of my bionic device expired in 2008; once again I had no choice but to leave Australian shores in order to survive. Although the bionic equipment was in Australia, it was not registered for my condition and so after 6 weeks of trying to get help; with a severe bowel obstruction and being very ill; I found a solution. This time in the capable hands of a brilliant Singaporean bowel surgeon and his colleagues. This device failure was unexpected and I did not have the funds needed to save my life. My partner Philip became proactive and painstakinly raised the necessary dollars so that I could have the treatment I required. The generosity of virtual stangers was overwhelming.
I know first-hand what it feels like to be told there is nothing that can be done… as a care-giver/wife, when I took Ian Gawler to the Philippines in February 1976 and as a patient with my own life threatening condition – I can empathise! Take heart there may be solutions.”
To read more about my story and Ian Gawler’s recovery – read Grace,Grit and Gratitude. See reviews or buy online at www.gracegawler.com
In the pursuit of healing the answer may be found outside the square as it was for us and for many of my patients. Importantly the answer is likely to be found by combining the best of both mainstream and complementary healing modalities. My Mission Statement is to Build Bridges in Medicine for the Advancement and Knowledge of Health Professionals for the Benefit of Patients and their Care-Givers.
“My wife, Jo, and I met Grace in September 2009, when Jo was fast succumbing to the effects of advanced Breast Cancer. It’s fair to say that if we hadn’t met Grace at that point Jo would probably not have survived. Grace gave us hope, support and recommended us to the best available medical treatment for Jo’s situation, which, as it turns out, was at a specialist integrated Cancer Clinic in Germany. Jo has responded extremely well to her treatment in what has virtually been a ‘miraculous’ turn-around. She still consults with Grace on a regular basis to discuss her on-going treatment and all aspects of her well being.” Jo’s grateful husband, Robin 6/5/2010
Grace’s approach has been honed over 35 years with 13,000 cancer patients and is solution focused. A pioneer across many aspects of cancer support she is known for her ability to combine science, conventional and natural medicine with innovative, outside the square thinking.
At Integrated Cancer Solutions (ICS) – we will offer the following and much more…
• Dynamic Solutions-Focused Support Groups – Teaching strategies and skills to enhance recovery. Realistic & practical tips on how to be a successful patient; dietary help, & stress reduction methods that work! Research indicates patients who attend professionally run support groups can increase their life expectancy as well as their wellbeing.
• Individualised Recovery Plans – using the best diagnostic tools and in close collaboration with integrated MDs and Oncologists, ICS combines the best of all medical and complementary systems giving the patient optimum outcomes.
• Globalised medical options and liaising – Sometimes live saving cancer solutions are not available in Australia but exist in overseas countries. ICS organises and liaises with the overseas treating practitioners and importantly provides ongoing support when they return.
• Emotional and psychological support for patients, their families and care givers – essential for quality of life and long term survival.
• Advocacy – ICS trained representatives can visit oncologists (or other practitioners) with patient to help with processing and understanding important information.
• Prostate Patient’s – Groups are planned for August. Facilitated by Grace Gawler & men’s health advocate Pip (Philip) Cornall – includes a group for partners. Residential groups are in the planning stage. There will also be other cancer specific groups such as breast, colon, gynaecological cancers etc….