Kiwi injured in Bali motorbike accident is home but big bill remains
A woman with Otago links critically injured in Bali is back in New Zealand and has begun her recovery.
Teenica Harrex, 42, was involved in a motorbike accident on December 10 that left her with eight broken ribs, a collapsed lung and cranial injuries.
Her parents, Ian and Anne Harrex, who previously lived in Alexandra but now live in Oamaru, had hoped to fly her home on December 30 but her injuries meant she was not able to travel.
A new plan had to be devised that allowed Teenica to be transported on a stretcher.
”She’s got some fairly horrific injuries,” Ian Harrex said.
”I was running out of options. Air New Zealand don’t fly out of Bali, and Singapore Airlines weren’t very co-operative as far as getting her out, and the only other option was Qantas, but that would have been wheelchaired on and into a business class and then sit her into a bed with a couple of nurses or a doctor and a nurse.”
Ian Harrex contacted Perth company Medical Air, which specialised in patient transport.
Medical Air flew her from Bali to Perth, where she was transferred on a stretcher to an Air New Zealand flight to Christchurch on Wednesday.
Adding layers of difficulty to an already traumatic experience, Harrex and her family face a medical bill of up to $250,000 for her care in Bali and transport back to New Zealand.
Harrex had been in Bali for about a year, teaching English on a temporary visa, but did not have travel insurance.
Her aunt and uncle Trevor and Sharyn Harrex, who live in Queensland, Australia, had established a Gofundme page to help pay for expenses.
A cousin has also set up a Givealittle page.
”It’s been a pretty traumatic and very expensive exercise,” Ian Harrex said.
Although the medical system at Bali International Medical Centre had been adequate, there had been some difficulties, including that the money was required up front before they would do anything, he said.
Chief executive of the Insurance Council of New Zealand Tim Grafton said it was important to buy travel insurance when booking and paying for tickets.
”Each policy will provide different levels of cover, and contain different specifications and exclusions, so it’s important travellers shop around to find a policy that best meets their needs.
”Depending on the policy, travel insurance can provide cover for a range of unforeseen events, including travel disruption, medical care, repatriation, replacement of lost or stolen property, passport and credit card replacement, and liability for damage caused to a person or their property.