Andrew: 50 years – Bali 2002 Survivor

In June 2003, I met Barry by chance during a physiotherapy session at RBWH. I was not in a good place and my situation was exacerbated by the constant travel to and from the hospital for treatment.

Quite understandably at that time, I felt most things I had planned and looked forward to were never going to happen.

After that first conversation, I was unsure that Barry could do anything for me, but I didn’t want to travel to Brisbane anymore, so here I was taking a chance, because I didn’t feel I was achieving anything.

I was being supported by Balimed a scheme implemented by the Federal Government through John Howard and set up to look after the health needs of people injured in Bali.

The necessary paper work was processed and connections made with Balimed by Michele, and the support from Balimed was and is exceptional in that they had the same goal that we did – to have me walking again as soon as possible.

An interim prosthesis was manufactured for both my above knee and below knee limbs, and the hard work really started!

Over the next few months, things became more manageable and settled down. I knew what I wanted from my life and mobility and with the support of Barry Leech Prosthetics & Orthotics Pty Ltd I made headway in leaps and bounds.

Every day there is a challenge to face and we all face obstacles but with support it can be done with dignity and self-assurance.

After ten years of being socket bound and having achieved almost everything that I wanted to in terms of getting back my independence, Barry and Michele guided and supported me through Osseointegration, which in itself is a challenge.

I have come to respect and care for the team at Barry Leech Prosthetics & Orthotics Pty Ltd a great deal.  I admire and respect their commitment, integrity, experience and caring to assist amputees to regain some normality in their lives.

For their part, they have given me the best opportunity to have a quality of life. For amputees, half of their achievement is how good the prosthesis is and the other half is how much effort they put in and their attitude.