Ten years ago, Monique Bareham received a cancer diagnosis. Like many people who go through cancer treatment, she was left with lymphoedema – a chronic, debilitating and incurable condition caused by damage to the lymphatic system.
Monique soon realised South Australia was the only state without a compression garment subsidy program. This meant many people living with lymphoedema were going without these necessary medical items.
Wanting to make a difference, Monique joined the Lymphoedema Support Group SA, now Lymphoedema Association SA Inc., and soon took on the role of president. After years of attending meetings, gathering personal experiences from people living with lymphoedema, and lobbying the state, the South Australian government announced a compression garment subsidy scheme in July 2020. Such a breakthrough would not have been possible without Monique’s efforts.
Monique remains tireless in her advocacy for the lymphoedema community across South Australia. She monitors the roll-out of the compression garment subsidy scheme to ensure availability and equity in its delivery.