Living overseas with BC

KBSKBS Member Posts: 3 New Member
HI ALL. I was diagnosed less than 4 weeks ago and to my surprise it has already become my new normal. Secondary BC, in my liver and pelvis. However, I live in Switzerland. All the information is in German, Italian or French. In the process of telling friends and family, a friend’s sister, who is a BC nurse referred me to this site. I can’t tell you how grateful I am to have Aussie voices. The medical staff here are amazing, but the language issue can be interesting. The doctor who told me of my diagnosis, for example, told me I’d ruined her day because my, up to now small curable cancer of a week earlier, had in fact metastasized to my liver. She reckons her day was ruined. I hope it’s ok to stay, despite being overseas. I desperately want to do my trip around Australia in the next year or two and will require 3 weekly infusions of HER 2 inhibited. Currently checking my health insurance about treatments overseas. From a practicality point of view, has anyone else done this? What has been your experience. 

Comments

  • SisterSister Adelaide Hills, SAMember Posts: 4,436
    Welcome @KBS.  Of course it's okay to stay.  We've got others who are overseas.  I can imagine the language barrier would be challenging on top of everything else but glad to hear that you've got good medical people looking after you.  I can't answer about the travel insurance but others may be able to give you info.
  • KBSKBS Member Posts: 3 New Member
    Thanks for that. Sorry I wasn’t clear. I meant the practicalities of extended travel with the requirements of three weekly infusions. We’re planning on doing the post retirement trip around Aus, just 10 years earlier. Priorities have all changed, as I understand is not uncommon. 
  • lrb_03lrb_03 Member Posts: 1,164
    edited August 13
    Many countries have reciprocal health care agreements. You could look in to that. 

    I've also heard of Australians travelling within Australia, with the support of their oncologist to arrange infusions throughout their travel

    I hope you get to do you trip, and enjoy your time here
  • primekprimek Broken HillMember Posts: 5,188
    To be honest there are hospitals all around Australia. It might take some pre planning but it should be entirely possible. There is also herceptin injections that might be a possibility here. I'm not sure about OS. Although are you not on perjeta as well as herceptin? I don't think that's available in injection form. 
  • Riki_BCNARiki_BCNA Administrator, Staff, Member, Moderator Posts: 271
    Hello @KBS and welcome. BCNA has a range of information for people with metastatic breast cancer in the My Journey online tool that covers many topics that may help navigate some of the health services and support here In Australia. https://www.bcna.org.au/understanding-breast-cancer/resources/my-journey-online-tool/
    The following website also provides information about reciprocal health care agreements
    https://www.humanservices.gov.au/individuals/services/medicare/reciprocal-health-care-agreements
    I am assuming from your post that you are an Australian citizen living in Switzerland, is this correct? Please feel that you can contact the BCNA helpline on 1800 500 258 for further information to assist.
  • KBSKBS Member Posts: 3 New Member
    That’s super, thanks. Yes am Australian, from Sydney. 
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