Global Referrals

Global Referrals

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The Grace Gawler Institute for Cancer Survivorship & Research

Referrals for Minimally Invasive Targeted Treatments

Local & Global Cancer Experts

The Grace Gawler Institute Cancer Patients without Borders…

Patients benefit enormously from our close collaborations with some of the best cancer centres in the world.

We speak from vast experience; 3+ decades experience referring patients overseas for innovative cancer treatments that were unavailable in Australia & New Zealand.

As a result; we frequently witness a hopeless prognoses transformed into a successful recovery and a return to wellness.

Transforming hopeless into hopeful with minimally invasive high-tech overseas cancer targeted treatments

Cancer story of hope: Sept 2019, one of our stage IV cancer patients has just returned home to Australia clear of any sign of cancer. Hers was a wonderful example of coordinating innovative treatments in three countries.

We initially referred her for genomic testing (for accurate diagnosis) followed by high-tech innovative treatments in Australia & Japan. After reconstructive colon surgery, completed in Singapore, the patient was declared cancer free. Full story below…

The Grace Gawler Institute's role is to refer, organise, coordinate, collaborate with doctors in the team, advise & support you through the whole process.


  1. Cancer treatments vary widely from country to country.
  2. E.g. Some hi-tech treatments like Proton Beam Therapy are not available in Australia & New Zealand.
  3. THUS: a negative prognosis in AU or NZ may be seen as curative in our collegiate hospitals overseas.


The process is NOT simple. There are huge challenges in coordinating national/international medical teams on the patient’s behalf. It requires diplomacy & a deep knowledge of multidisciplinary cancer medicine across borders.  DO NOT try this alone. 

If cancer hospitals in Australia and New Zealand consistently achieved the positive outcomes seen in Grace Gawler Institute navigated patients, it would be highly publicised in the press & medical conferences.

Our Global Cancer Navigation Service: 

Obviously, the Grace Gawler Institute is much more than a referral service. Thorough, comprehensive & personalised, we provide guidance & management at every step. Our unique service is based on our founder’s 45+ years experience helping cancer patients and her own lifesaving overseas surgeries (6).

Because we are very thorough, more time is spent than is charged for. Extra costs for time can be substantial – however our charity status allows us to subsidise extra services by way of donations. 

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Along with your medical team, we help match you to centres of excellence with expertise in your particular cancer- within Australia and globally. Over many decades, the Grace Gawler Institute has established close collaborations with some of the world’s leading oncologists; Singapore, Japan, Germany, Taiwan, UK, EU & USA also means we can fast-track second opinions.

Support/Guidance/Organisation/Coordination Package: We understand that international travel for cancer treatment can be daunting. We can assist with logistics, travel information whilst guiding you through your treatments. We maintain a close connection with you while overseas and can provide liaisons with your local doctors and oncology team – essential for long-term monitoring and maintenance. It goes without saying that we also offer psychological & emotional support on your journey. .
See the Grace Gawler Institute Navigation Plan – a bundle of pre-paid services that covers all aspects of the above

Why we help patients access advanced overseas treatments?

Personal experience: Grace Gawler, knows what it like to be a patient with a life-challenging condition who has fallen through gaps in the medical system. In December 1997 she awoke after routine surgery to discover that her rectum was paralysed. 

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This unexpected event was to change her life drastically. Consecutive surgeries followed, ileostomies, colostomies and removal of damaged and impacted colon were band-aid treatments that bought time; but her long term prognosis was grim.

In 2002-03, with just one Australian physician supporting her decision to seek an experimental treatment developed in the Netherlands, (15 others were not in favour); she left Australian to seek her optimum recovery. Her experimental surgery involved a long stay in Rotterdam.

The procedure involved surgically implanting a bionic device and electrodes in her lower back and buttock; designed to mimic the nerve supply that no longer functioned.

Not tried before for her condition, it was successful and a world first! Every day her device still pulses at 6 volts and is responsible for Grace getting her life back; ending those years of colon surgeries and failing ileostomy procedures.

Replacement surgeries are ongoing. The battery operated device needs to be replaced approximately every 3-4 years. So far Grace has undergone 23 surgical procedure since 1997. The procedure is now performed in Singapore, but still not available in Australia.

Click here BBC Interview – Grace explains her ‘world first’ procedure in the Netherlands


Helping Patients Navigate the National & International Cancer Maze:

With Grace’s successful overseas treatment history, it is not surprising that one of the Institute’s key initiatives involves helping patients find valid medical solutions overseas when solution are not available in their home country.

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The need: When it comes to cancer treatments, not all countries are equal in what they can offer. Some proven treatments and procedures may be registered for use in some countries – but not others.

We believe that life is precious and that well-being & good life quality is the right of all cancer patients as it is their right to explore all possible options to extend their life with good quality.

We are committed to assist cancer patients to navigate the complex international cancer treatment maze with support and guidance. 

New Technologies: Over the Decades we have developed close collaborations with experts in many medical fields.

As well we have embraced the highest levels of medical science and technology including advanced genomic testing and monitoring tools.

Our medical oncology colleagues can also assist with providing access to targeted treatments as recommended by precision medicine diagnostics. In terms of state of the art treatments; we enlist our international experts to provide you with treatment opinions, not available in your home country.

We can assist with referrals to Cell-Based Immune Therapy Centres, Proton beam, Cyber-knife centres, BCNT located in Asia; these are treatment options not available in Australia/NZ.

Cancer story of Hope – in full:

Today we received good news from a stage 4 patient (K) enrolled in our navigation services. Unsuccessfully treated in her hometown of Cairns, she had been given a terrible prognosis.  Taking her on as a navigated patient, Grace Gawler had soon organised a rare combination of innovative treatments.

Patient K received cyber knife treatment in Perth, cell-based immune therapy in Japan, followed by further assessment with 4 multidisciplinary specialists in Singapore. Her numerous tumours are gone. No cancer is detected.

Solid science behind the miracle: A national & international medical team was assembled by Grace – based on patient K’s needs. The team was also closely coordinated by Grace. 

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How it works: It’s complex – I’ll try to explain.
Think of Grace as the conductor of an orchestra of international medical experts. The goal; produce a ‘masterpiece’ for the patient. (remission, stable condition etc)
Timing & Sequencing: The conductor organises sequencing of the treatments to the patient’s advantage. For example; if immune therapy in Japan begins within a 4-week window after cyber knife in Perth, there is an extra immune multiplier effect.
Finally: Once patient K’s tumours had been destroyed, the conductor directed the Singapore colo-rectal doctors to another problem she had been carefully monitoring. Patient K’s colon was narrowing causing severe constipation. If unattended, a rupture and possible death would follow. This had been neglected by her doctors in Cairns. After consulting the Singapore specialists, reconstructive surgery with a globally renowned colorectal surgeon was advised and successfully executed.

Happily, stories like these are not uncommon. However; building high-quality international medical teams is lengthy process requiring an amazing in-depth knowledge of a wide range of innovative treatments. Grace has been doing this for 4.5 decades.

Science-based nutrition: As Australia’s leading cancer nutrition expert, Grace, ensures the patient’s complementary medicines are genomically & pharmaco-genomically tested. The scientific approach eliminates Google guesswork for the patient who might also blindly follow advice from friends and family. 


Diane StoryBoard by Pip Cornall:
HINT – Enlarge storyboard & use arrows or slider to advance all 3 pages