About Leigh

Leigh Bernhardt, a human resources, industrial relations, mediation and commercial arbitration consultant, was 55 in 2008 when he was diagnosed with stage 4 non-Hodgkin lymphoma. The diagnosis came as a shock to Leigh, who was a fit and healthy non-smoker and non-drinker, a runner, triathlete, competitive tennis player and tennis coach. That was the start of Leigh's journey during which he has had further cancers, treatments and surgeries.

For the next 10 years, the author went through chemotherapy treatment, stem cell collection procedures, a heart attack, surgery for kidney cancer, two total hip replacements and hernia repair surgeries.

Over the course of Leigh’s numerous treatments and medical procedures, he sometimes received inadequate information about side effects of drugs and procedures, when this knowledge at the right time would have significantly improved outcomes. At other times he experienced suboptimal care, often due to incompetence or understaffing.

Leigh realised that in order to successfully navigate the healthcare system— indeed, to survive within the system — he needed to take control of his treatments and medication, manage the advice he received and make decisions based on what was best for him. rather than rely on 'swimming with the tide’ and simply hoping things would turn out for the best.

Leigh’s intention with his book is to help people who are facing cancer or other life-threatening conditions deal with the many decisions they must make in order to achieve the best outcome possible under their circumstances. The tips, examples and advice he provides will be useful and timely for people facing such a stressful and anxious time in their lives.

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