Grant Davies, diagnosed with multiple myeloma

In April 2014, I was diagnosed with a rare blood cancer called Multiple Myeloma. I was 43 at the time, a husband, and father to a 5 year old.

My treatment included radiation, chemotherapy, and two stem cell transplants. I had a good response, but by October 2016 my levels were on the rise, and my Haematologist suggested Lenalidomide if I could get hold of it.

Unfortunately it was not that simple, it’s not available through medical aid, and the cost was in excess of R65,000 per month. There was no way I could afford it here in South Africa, but there was good news, it was available in India for around R2,500 per month.

It was a stressful time, as I urgently needed the drug but bringing in the medication from India was illegal and I was unable to travel. Fortunately a friend was willing to take the chance, and brought in my first couple of months supply. Over the next few years I sourced my Lenalidomide from India in the same way… relying on people willing to bring back supplies for me.

I was lucky that I could afford and source Lenalidomide, but for too many, this life saving medication will not be accessible due to the cost and complications of sourcing it.