Find out more about starting research at The Baird Institute

RESEARCH FELLOWS

Current Research Fellows

Edwards Lifesciences Fellowship

Michael Seco BMedSc MBBS

PhD Candidate

Dr Michael Seco is an Intern at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in 2015. The award of Edwards Lifesciences fellow has enabled him to complete his PhD part-time during medical school and internship. Dr Seco’s PhD project is titled “Minimising the invasive of cardiac surgery”, and is performed under the supervision of Profs. Michael Vallely, Paul Bannon, & John Fraser (UQ). The aim is to evaluate the safety and clinical outcomes of new, minimally-invasive techniques, especially in elderly or high-risk patients. This includes transcatheter aortic valve replacement, off-pump coronary artery bypass grafting, and robotic techniques.

Some early findings from the project have been published in international peer-reviewed journals and presented at the Annual Scientific Meetings of the Australian & New Zealand Society of Cardiac & Thoracic Surgery.

Medtronic Heart Fellowship

Andrew Sherrah BSc MBBS (Hons)

PhD Candidate

Dr Andrew Sherrah is a PhD candidate at the University of Sydney and current holder of the Baird Institute Medtronic Heart Fellowship. His research interest is in the diagnosis and management of thoracic aortic disease.

He has completed his Bachelor of Science (Physiology) at the University of New South Wales in 2006, and his Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery with Honors at the University of Sydney in 2009.

Doctor Sherrah’s current projects include the qualification of myeloperoxidase as a prognostic marker in aortic aneurysm disease and the use of magnetic resonance imaging in the assessment of flow dynamics in aortic dissection. He has presented his research at both national and international scientific conferences. Doctor Sherrah is also a medical student tutor in the Sydney Medical Program, University of Sydney.

Past Research Fellows

Medtronic Heart Fellowship

James Edelman BSc (Hons) MBBS (Hons)

PhD Candidate

Dr James Edelman was awarded the inaugural Medtronic Heart Fellowship in 2010. He is a trainee in Cardiothoracic Surgery and the Medtronic Fellowship has enabled him to take time away from clinical training to undertake his PhD full-time at the University of Sydney, under the supervision of Associate Professor Michael Vallely and Professor Paul Bannon.

Dr Edelman’s PhD project is titled Inflammation, Tissue Injury and Thrombosis in Off-pump Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting. The aim is to better understand thrombotic complications after surgery, and the processes linking injury with inflammation and coagulation. Divided into three parts, the project focuses on 1) novel inflammatory markers and cellular responses that are altered after cardiac surgery, and may contribute to the systemic inflammatory response syndrome; 2) the alterations in coagulation that follow surgery, and may put patients at risk of either post-operative bleeding or thrombosis; and 3) the prevention of neurologic injury in coronary artery bypass grafting by using the ‘an aortic’, off-pump technique.

Some early findings from the project have been published in peer-reviewed journals and presented at the Annual Scientific Meetings of the Australasian Society of Cardiothoracic Surgery and Cardiac Society of Australia and New Zealand. James is a Clinical Associate Lecturer at the University of Sydney and regularly teaches students in the Graduate Medical Program at the Sydney Medical School.

St Jude Medical Aortic Disease Fellowship

Hamid Mollahajian MBBS

PhD Candidate

Dr Hamid Mollahajian was born in Tehran, Iran and moved to Australia after graduating from Medical School at Tehran University. His passion for surgery started in the early days of medical school, along with a genuine interest in research which led to his participation in research on oesophageal and cervical cancer, two common cancers in Iran, during his internship.

After moving to Australia in 2007, Dr Mollahajian developed an interest in cardiovascular surgery whilst working in the Royal Melbourne Hospital. He participated in research on Routine Use of Noradrenaline in Coronary Surgery, which he presented at the national cardiothoracic meeting.

Dr Mollahajian moved to Sydney after he was awarded the St Jude Medical Fellowship in 2010. This fellowship allows him to undertake a full-time PhD, researching biocompatibility of vascular grafts, under the supervision of Professor Paul Bannon at the University of Sydney. He also participates in the teaching of medical students at the Central Clinical School, as an Honorary Associate of the University of Sydney. Dr Mollahajian has been accepted into the vascular surgery training program in 2011. He will start this training after completing his PhD in 2013.

Slater & Gordon Fellowship

Tristan Yan

Dr Tristan Yan is a Consultant Cardiothoracic Surgeon, Professor of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery at the Macquarie University Hospital and Clinical Professor of Surgery at the University of Sydney, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, and Sydney Adventist Hospital in Sydney, Australia. Professor Yan graduated from the University of New South Wales (UNSW) with Bachelor of Science (Medicine), Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery. He also completed three postgraduate higher degrees, Master of Surgery (USyd), Doctor of Medicine (UNSW) and Doctor of Philosophy (UNSW). He was trained at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and St Vincent’s Hospital in Sydney and then obtained Cardiothoracic Surgery Fellowship from the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons. Following advanced surgical fellowships in the United States, England, Scotland and Germany, he specializes in minimally invasive cardiovascular surgery, and minimally invasive thoracic surgery. He has authored or co-authored more than 250 articles and textbook chapters, with an h-index of 41 and approximately 6,700 citations. He is the Chairman of the Collaborative Research (CORE) Group responsible for establishing and organizing the world’s largest multi-institutional Aortic ARCH Registry, consisting of more than 14,000 patients. He is also the founder and the Editor-in-Chief of the Annals of Cardiothoracic Surgery. Doctor Yan received the inaugural Slater & Gordon Mesothelioma Fellowship in 2008, enabling him to complete his Master of Surgery in 2010.

St Jude Medical Scholarship

Michael Byrom  MBChB GradDipSurg PhD FRACS

Dr Michael Byrom is now a surgeon with Sydney Heart and Lung and completed his PhD in 2013. He joined The Baird Institute for Applied Heart and Lung Surgical Research as the St Jude Medical Scholarship holder. He initiated research into the development of new artificial blood vessels for use in vascular bypass surgery such as coronary artery bypass. To date this research has resulted in the development of two entirely new types of blood vessel prosthesis as well as numerous conference presentations, publications, and international patents. Michael has worked on reviews of bypass conduit failure as well as guidelines for the laboratory assessment of vascular prosthetic blood compatibility assessment.

Christopher Cao BSc(Med) MBBS

Dr Christopher Cao is a Past Research Fellow at the Baird Institute. Concurrent with his clinical practice in Cardiothoracic Surgery, he had a keen interest in academic research, as demonstrated by more than 80 publications and book chapters, including first authorships in The Lancet, The Lancet Oncology, The Lancet Respiratory Medicine, Circulation, Annals of Thoracic Surgery, Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, Journal of Thoracic Oncology, Chest, and others. He was the chief investigator in a large number of institutional studies, multi-institutional registries, systematic reviews and meta-analyses. Many of these were achieved in a team environment, where he supervised and trained junior residents and medical students to become proficient with statistical analysis and academic writing. As the Section Editor for the Annals of Cardiothoracic Surgery, a Founding Member of the Collaborative Research Group, and a reviewer in more than 20 international journals, he has had extensive experience in surgical academia.

General Fellows

Roneil Parikh

PhD Candidate

Dr Roneil Parikh graduated first class from Seth G.S. Medical College and King Edward Memorial Hospital in Mumbai with a Bachelor in Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery in May 2013. Roneil moved to Sydney in August 2013 to pursue a PhD in cardiothoracic surgery under the supervision of Professors Paul Bannon and Graham Hillis.

His research is the VISION Cardiac surgical study, a 15,000 patient, multicentre study designed to assess the role of high sensitivity Troponin I as a biomarker to predict complications and survival after cardiac surgery. Supported by his supervisors, Roneil is part of the Australian arm of this study which is running at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital.

Vikrant Dhurandhar

Dr Vikrant Dhurandhar graduated from Byramjee Jeejeebhoy Medical College, Pune, India, in 2009, with a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery. In March 2012, Vikrant moved to Sydney, to undertake a full-time PhD in Surgery, at the University of Sydney, under the supervision of Professor Paul Bannon.

Vikrant is researching the different aspects of surgical techniques in high-risk cardiac surgery, especially in the elderly and high-risk Australian population – specifically coronary artery bypass grafting and mitral valve surgery.

Inaugural Stanford Exchange Scholar

Ben Robinson

Dr Ben Robinson is our inaugural Stanford Exchange Scholar. For a training surgeon, exposure to different approaches can only improve patient care as a diversity of management options can then be applied in complex clinical situations. With this in mind Professor Paul Bannon along with Dr. Joseph Woo of Stanford University established the Stanford/RPAH Clinical Exchange.

This exchange enables exposure to various surgical and perioperative management methodologies and will serve to enhance the training and skill of our surgeons.

Post Doctoral Researchers

Sean Lal BMEDSCI (HONS1), MBBS (HONS) (USYD), MPHIL(MED), FRACP

Dr Sean Lal is a consultant cardiologist associated with The Baird Institute and is currently researching ‘The intrinsic regenerative capacity of the human heart’. Sean has a PhD in medicine and has a long association with the University of Sydney and The Royal Prince Alfred Hospital.

Sean is Head of the Cardiac Research Laboratory in the School of Medical Sciences at the University of Sydney among other roles and his research includes the use of human heart tissue, avoiding the need to use animal tissue in associated research as well as researching advanced techniques in regeneration in the area of heart failure.

 

Michael Stevens

Dr Michael Stevens has developed advanced skills in the field of biomedical engineering research related to physiological modelling and control. He obtained his doctoral degree from the University of Queensland in 2014, investigating biventricular assist devices through the use of automatic control of dual left ventricular assist devices. It is here that he acquired a passion for robotics; pursuing this further by completing studies in advanced control and robotics.

He has extensive experience in both the development of novel software and its uses and has supervised undergraduate and post-graduate students from medical and electrical engineering disciplines. He recently commenced work as a Research Associate at the University of New South Wales, and is connected to The Baird Institute as part of the NHMRC Centre for Research Excellence (CRE) in Advanced Cardio-respiratory Therapies Improving OrgaN Support (ACTIONS). This CRE aims to optimise the risk-benefit profile of ventricular assist devices by improving the patient-device interface and making the technology better, safer and more accessible.

Michael is currently collaborating with Professor Paul Bannon, Professor Stuart Grieve (from Sydney Translational Imaging Laboratory) and Associate Professor Paul Forrest to create computer simulations of blood flow during Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO), with the goal of optimising end-organ perfusion of ECMO patients. Michael has published and presented his work internationally and has been repeatedly successful in writing and gaining research grants.

Graduate Medical Researchers

Sarah Andvik MDBMed

Dr Sarah Andvik graduated from the University of New South Wales in 2014 with a degree in MD BMed. Sarah currently works as a Surgical Resident at St Vincent’s Hospital in Melbourne. Sarah’s research interests focus on Extra Corporeal Mechanical Oxygenation (ECMO) and aortopathies. She has completed a project on cardiopulmonary resuscitation and the use of ECMO for in-hospital cardiac arrest, conducted at St Vincent’s Hospital, Sydney. Sarah presented her results at the Extracorporeal Life Support Organization (ELSO) Annual Congress in Rome, Italy in 2012. Sarah has also presented papers on genetic aortopathies and malignant pleural mesothelioma.

Sarah is currently undertaking research with the Baird Institute, examining veno-arterial extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (VA-ECMO), a highly specialised cardiopulmonary technology that can be used in a prolonged fashion in the intensive care unit, for patients with significant cardiac and/or respiratory failure. This work has the potential to improve the identification of those patients who would most benefit from the use of VA-ECMO.

Andrew Haymet

Dr Andrew Haymet is a Junior Medical Officer at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Dr Haymet’s research is currently investigating the long term outcomes of minimally invasive transcatheter aortic valve replacement technology (TAVI). His previous work with the Baird Institute has included a publication describing rare but potentially lethal complications associated with this technology, titled “Aortic Perforation Following Transcatheter Aortic Valve Deployment”. Given his mechanical engineering background, Andrew is currently planning a PhD in the field of extracorporeal mechanical circulatory support to be supervised by Professor Michael Vallely and Professor John Fraser.

 

Michael Lee

Dr Michael Lee recently graduated from Western Sydney University and is currently working at Royal North Shore Hospital. His interest in heart and lung surgery has led him to be involved in research with The Baird Institute. His research question is in the outcomes of geriatric patients aged 85 years or more who have had cardiac surgery. Michael is also interested in the growing use of advanced technology in surgery.

 

Michalis Koullouros

Dr Michalis Koullouros graduated from The School of Medicine and Dentistry, Aberdeen University and is currently working at The Royal Free Hospital in London. He has a keen interest in surgery and surgical research and has led research projects, published in peer-reviewed journals and presented at surgical conferences. During his time at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, he had the opportunity to work with Baird Institute surgeons within the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, and has since collaborated with them in undertaking research in the department. Michalis aims to train as a surgeon as well as engage in further research in the form of a PhD in the future. His current research question is ‘Bilateral versus single internal mammary harvest in coronary artery bypass surgery’.

 

Undergraduate Medical Researchers

Bryan Lim

Bryan Lim is a medical student at The University of Sydney and is undertaking research into methods to reduce the rate of neurological injury associated with coronary artery bypass grafting. The research will use a propensity-matched comparison of anaortic off-pump versus on-pump techniques. He is also conducting a systematic review of the literature pertaining to the timing of surgical intervention in asymptomatic degenerative mitral valve disease

Ben Elias Indja

Ben Elias Indja is a medical student at Sydney University with undergraduate qualifications in Project Management. He is completing a Maters of Philosophy on brain injury in cardiac surgery with Sydney Translational Imaging Laboratory, the Heart Research Institute (Prof Stuart Grieve) and The Baird Institute with supervisor, Professor Michael Vallely. His thesis research question is ‘Neural network imaging to characterise brain injury in cardiac procedures’.

Dong Fang Eastwood Zhao

Dong Fang Eastwood Zhao has a BA and is currently studying medicine at Sydney University. He has a strong interest in cardiothoracic surgery and has been published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology and has made an oral abstract presentation at the recent European Society of Cardiology Congress 2016 in Rome, Italy. His research includes the use of no-touch/anaortic off-pump coronary artery bypass grafting, the use of left ventricular assist devices as a bridge to transplantation and mechanical versus bioprosthetic aortic valves in middle-aged patients.

Stella Rose Harris

Stella Rose Harris graduated from Sydney University in 2014 with a Bachelor of Science (Physiology). She returned to Sydney University and is currently enrolled in the Doctor of Medicine and Graduate Certificate in Surgical Sciences. She has commenced her research career by investigating patient outcomes after bypass surgery. Her research question is ‘A propensity matched analysis between anaortic off pump coronary artery bypass grafting and on-pump coronary artery bypass grafting in order to examine 30-day outcome data for neurological injury, mortality and other perioperative outcomes’

Deanna Lee

Deanna Lee has a Bachelor Degree in Biology (New York University) and is currently studying Medicine at Sydney University. She has a keen interest in surgery. While pursuing her undergraduate degree, she took part in liver cancer research with the Hoshida Lab in the Icahn School of Medicine (Mount Sinai Health System, NY), and worked with researchers at the NYU Langone Medical Centre researching acute brain injuries at the Division of Neurocritical Care. Deanna is a council member of the Sydney University Surgical Society. Her role is to represent colleagues and to help them in their surgical pursuits by creating opportunities to develop these surgical skills. Deanna’s current research includes ‘Prevention Strategies of Ischaemic Spinal Cord Injuries in Descending and Thoracoabdominal Aortic Surgery and Endovascular Aortic Repair: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis’ and ‘Ischaemic Spinal Cord Injury in Descending and Thoracoabdominal Aortic Surgery and Endovascular Aortic Repair: A Single Institution Retrospective Case Series’.

Chad Abbott

Chad Abbott has a Bachelor of Science and is a postgraduate medical student at Sydney University. Originally from Perth, he is in his final year of studies. Recently, he travelled to both the University of Pennsylvania and Stanford University to complete an elective placement in Cardiothoracic Surgery. He is researching long-term surgical outcomes in aortic valve bioprostheses. His research question is ‘Early Structural Valve Deterioration in the Mitroflow Aortic Bioprosthesis.

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Dr Brian Plunkett

This content is currently being updated.

Dr Benjamin Robinson

Mr Benjamin Robinson is an adult cardiothoracic surgeon with a long association with The Baird Institute. Whilst a medical student, he completed honours research with the Baird on outcomes in early-stage non-small cell lung cancer, under the supervision of Professor Brian McCaughan. He was awarded a Baird Institute Fellowship for this work. He subsequently trained in cardiothoracic surgery at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and was the inaugural Baird Institute – Stanford University exchange scholar. Mr Robinson later completed a cardiac surgery clinical fellowship at Bart’s Heart Centre in London. He then worked as a consultant cardiothoracic surgeon at St. James’s Hospital in Dublin, before returning to Sydney to take up appointments at Royal Prince Alfred, Concord Repatriation General and Strathfield Private Hospitals.

Mr Robinson has experience in the spectrum of adult cardiac surgery, including coronary, valvular and aortic disease, as well as in general thoracic surgery. He has specific clinical interest in minimal access aortic valve surgery, arterial coronary grafting and aortic surgery. He has completed postgraduate study at Cambridge University and has academic interests in surgical outcomes research and epidemiology.

Professor Tristan Yan

Dr Tristan Yan is the Head of Department of Thoracic Surgery at Chris O’Brien Lifehouse. Professor Yan graduated from the University of New South Wales (UNSW) with Bachelor of Science (Medicine), Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery. He also completed three postgraduate higher degrees, Master of Surgery (USyd), Doctor of Medicine (UNSW) and Doctor of Philosophy (UNSW). He was trained at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and St Vincent’s Hospital in Sydney and then obtained Cardiothoracic Surgery Fellowship from the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons. Following advanced specialty fellowships in the United States, England, Scotland and Germany, he specializes in minimally invasive cardiovascular surgery, and minimally invasive thoracic surgery.

Professor Tristan Yan is dedicated to surgical innovations. He applies the latest pioneering techniques to minimize surgical trauma and access sites and thus achieves a more rapid and comfortable recovery for his patients. He first completed his general surgical fellowship with Paul Sugarbaker in the United States, one of the most prominent surgeons in the world. He was then closely trained by the pioneer of Minimally Invasive Thoracic Surgery, Mr. William Walker, in Edinburgh, where he mastered the technical expertise of video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) to perform complex lung resections, such as lobectomy and segmentectomy.

Associate Professor Chris Cao

After completing his medical degree at the University of New South Wales with First Class Honours, Christopher attended his pre-internship at Yale University, USA. He scored 99/99 for his United States Medical Licensing Exam, and completed his Cardiothoracic surgical training in Sydney. Concurrently, Christopher completed his PhD degree with Sydney University, focusing on the surgical management of lung and pleural diseases.

After completing his surgical training with the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons, Christopher was invited to a Fellowship at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Centre in New York City, one of the largest cancer centres in the world. This was followed by a Fellowship in New York University, where he was asked to join the Faculty in the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery. His fellowship was focused on robotic and minimally invasive thoracic surgery, treating lung cancers, mediastinal tumours, mesothelioma, and other lung-related diseases. During his 18-month Fellowship at MSKCC and NYU, Christopher was fortunate to work with some of the leading international surgeons, gaining invaluable clinical and academic experience.

With over 100 publications in international peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters, A/Prof Cao has a keen interest in thoracic surgery, particularly the treatment of lung cancers through minimally invasive surgery. He has made more than 50 presentations in international meetings as a Faculty Member in Paris, New York, Edinburgh, Taipei, Sydney, and Guangzhou. Christopher has personally supervised students and residents from Sydney University, University of New South Wales, Cornell University and New York University.

He is a member of the Australian and New Zealand Society of Cardiac and Thoracic Surgery, and works as a Consultant Surgeon at Lifehouse, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Concord Hospital, Sydney Adventist Hospital, and Macquarie University Hospital.

Dr Mike Byrom

Dr Michael Byrom is a modern, innovative cardiothoracic surgeon with training and experience in New Zealand, Australia, the United Kingdom, and Italy. Particular areas of expertise include:

  • Truly minimally-invasive surgery to the aortic valve that avoids complete division of the breast bone (hemi-sternotomy, right anterior mini-thoracotomy); allowing faster recovery and return to normal activities
  • Mitral valve repair with excellent repair rates and outcomes – resulting from diverse training in France, Italy, and the United Kingdom
  • Avoidance of the need for anticoagulation through valve selection, valve repair, and surgical treatment of atrial fibrillation
  • Minimally-invasive lung resection, avoiding a large thoracotomy wound and enabling faster recovery and return to normal activities with reduced pain and discomfort
  • Sternal and rib titanium plate fixation of chronic non-united fractures
  • Performing these procedures while minimising risk of complications, allowing Dr Byrom to achieve world-class results for his patients

Dr Matthew Bayfield

Dr Matthew Bayfield is an extremely experienced cardiothoracic surgeon with a broad range of skills and special interests within his field. He has performed more than 6000 heart and lung procedures. Dr Bayfield has hospital appointments at Strathfield Private Hospital, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and Concord Hospital. His surgical interests include:

  • Coronary artery surgery: Dr Bayfield is one of Australia’s busiest coronary surgeons; with particular focus on minimal access incisions, and use of in-situ bilateral internal mammary artery grafts for enhanced longevity of the benefit of coronary revascularization.
  • Aortic root and arch surgery: Dr Bayfield has been performing aortic root and arch surgery since 1995, when he completed a Cardiovascular Fellowship at the University of Virginia in the USA. His focus is on o minimal access incisions, short cardiopulmonary bypass times, and for arch surgery antegrade cerebral perfusion with cerebral oxygen saturation monitoring.
  • Surgery for emphysema / CAL: Dr Bayfield was trained in open lung reduction surgery whilst doing a fellowship at the University of Virginia in 1995. Since that time he has developed thoracoscopic techniques for the procedure, and since 2003 been an implanter of endobronchial valves as a minimally invasive alternative to surgery. With over 100 endobronchial valve case experience, and long term follow-up of these patients, he is one of Australia’s most experienced endobronchial valve proceduralist.
  • Correction of pectus defects: Dr Bayfield has a special interest in correction of both pectus and carinatum defects, with techniques including implantation of Nuss bar under video-assisted control, and open radical sternochondroplasty.Lung cancer surgery: Dr Bayfield has been in surgical partnershio with Professor Brian McCaughan since 1996, and was trained by him as a registrar. Prof McCaughan is Australia’s most experienced and prolific lung cancer surgeon, has published widely on many aspects of its treatment, and has been awarded Medal of the Order of Australia (AM) for services to health in respect to his work on malignant mesothelioma.
  • Pacemaker and defibrillator implantation: Dr Bayfield was trained in device implantation as a young surgeon in the 1980’s and has developed skills to ensure that a device can be safely and reliably implanted even in the most difficult case with minimal risk. He was trained in cardiac resynchronzation therapy techniques at the introduction of that technology. He has regular pacemaker and defibrillator implantation lists at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Strathfield Private Hospital, and Concord Hospital.
  • Surgical treatment for ischaemic cardiomyopathy: Dr Bayfield trained in heart and lung transplantation whilst at the University of Virginia. With this skill base he has been able to develop a multi-faceted approach to treat patients whose hearts have been damaged by coronary artery disease (heart attack). These therapies include coronary artery bypass, mitral valve repair, and implantation of CRT defibrillators.

Professor Paul Bannon

Professor Paul Bannon is an adult cardiothoracic surgeon of international standing with clinical appointments at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Concord and Strathfield Private Hospital. At Royal Prince Alfred Hospital Professor Bannon is the Head of Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Co-Chair of the Institute for Academic Surgery, Director of the Robotic Training Institute and the current President of the Medical Officers Association. At the University of Sydney, he holds the inaugural Professorial Chair of Cardiothoracic Surgery and the Bosch Chair of Surgery. He is also the current Head of the Discipline of Surgery for the Sydney Medical School and the Academic Director of the newly opened Translational Research Facility or Hybrid Theatre at the Charles Perkins Centre. He is the Chair of The Baird Institute for Applied Heart and Lung Surgical Research. Professionally he is the Past President of the Australian and New Zealand Society of Cardiothoracic Surgeons (ANZSCTS) and in that role serves on the steering Committee for the ANZSCTS National Cardiac Surgical Database, the National TAVI Accreditation Committee and is the Cardiac Surgical Chair of the Medical Benefits Schedule review program. For the Ministry of Health NSW he has been in the role of Co-Chair of the Cardiac Devices Committee for the Agency of Clinical Innovation.

Professor Bannon graduated from the University of Sydney in 1987, completed a PhD from the same institution in 1998 and was awarded a FRACS (CTh) in 1998. He has a particular passion for translational research in the areas of congenital aortic and mitral valve disease, biomaterials and biocompatibility, limitation of blood product usage in cardiac surgery, the inflammatory response to bypass and the development of academic surgical careers. He has authored or co-authored more than 120 scientific papers, published in peer-reviewed journals. He is co-editor-in-chief of the Annals of Cardiothoracic Surgery, a Medline listed multimedia journal of cardiothoracic surgery. Professor Bannon has a reputation as the ‘surgeons surgeon’ and has particular expertise in surgery of the aortic root and arch, high-risk re-do surgery, total-arterial coronary artery bypass grafting and surgery for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

Professor Richmond W. Jeremy

MB BS PHD FRACP FAHA FESC FCSANZ GAICD

Professor Richmond Jeremy’s medical and cardiology training were at the University of Sydney and Royal Prince Alfred Hospital.

His clinical research career includes a PhD on coronary physiology and a post doctoral research Fellowship at Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore before returning to the University of Sydney and Royal Prince Alfred Hospital.

University of Sydney responsibilities have included service as Associate Dean Sydney, Medical School, Head of Central Clinical School and Pro Vice-Chancellor, Campus Infrastructure and Services.

Professional responsibilities have included service as Editor-in-Chief of Heart Lung and Circulation, membership of Boards on National Heart Foundation (NSW), Royal Australasian College of Physicians (Adult Medicine Division) and Cardiac Society of Australia and New Zealand.

Mr. Shaun Clyne

MA LLM (Syd)

Shaun is a corporate lawyer based in Sydney. He is the Australian Head of the Mergers & Acquisitions practice. He regularly advises on a wide range of corporate and securities law issues for public listed companies including takeovers, schemes of arrangement and capital raisings. He advises on Australian Stock Exchange compliance matters and regularly acts for both bidders and targets in connection with takeover bids and schemes of arrangement (hostile and friendly) for ASX-listed companies.

A leading practitioner in equity capital markets, Shaun has also advised numerous companies on their initial public offerings and capital raisings (rights issues, AREO’s, placements, employee share and options plans).

Shaun has presented at a variety of seminars and conferences and published several papers in his areas of specialisation.

His areas of expertise are mergers and acquisitions, corporate advisory and capital markets.

Ms. Joanne Wade

BEc LLB

Joanne Wade has been a plaintiff lawyer since her admission to the Supreme Court of NSW in 1996 and has worked in asbestos litigation for well over 18 years. Joanne is an Accredited Specialist in Personal Injury Law and prides herself on her communication with her clients and, on many occasions, her clients’ families. She understands the importance and need to handle all her cases with the utmost diligence and compassion. Joanne has acted for hundreds of people suffering from mesothelioma, lung cancer, asbestosis and asbestos related pleural disease. Her clients are everyday people who have worked hard all their lives and deserve justice. Joanne acted for Steven Dunning in his claim against BHP Billiton Limited in the Dust Diseases Tribunal of NSW (Dunning vBHP Billiton Limited [2014] NSWDDT 3). Mr Dunning suffered from malignant pleural mesothelioma and in a landmark decision; the court awarded Mr Dunning the highest amount for damages for pain and suffering in NSW. Joanne went on to represent Mr Dunning in the Appeal before the NSW Court ofAppeal where BHP’s appeal was unanimously dismissed (BHPBilliton Limited v Dunning [2015] NSWCA 55). Joanne has also successfully acted for the late Bevan McGrath in his claim against Allianz Australia Insurance Limited, for his condition of asbestos related pleural disease and ensured that case was resolved on a provisional damages basis. Mr McGrath went on to develop mesothelioma, one of only a small number of cases where he then brought a second claim for further damages because his first claim was resolved on a provisional basis. Joanne successfully acted for Mr McGrath in both his claims and the late Mr McGrath successfully received further damages in a judgment by the court (McGrath v Allianz AustraliaInsurance Limited [2011] NSWDDT). The judgement was upheld on appeal (Allianz Australia Insurance Limited v McGrath [2011]NSWCA 153).

“It is with great privilege to work with people suffering from asbestos illnesses, and the greatest satisfaction formed is securing a result for those people to help ease their suffering, and to know their families will be looked after.”Joanne takes great pride in the work Slater and Gordon have undertaken in representing victims of asbestos disease, unions and asbestos support groups, including the work of Ken Fowlie in 2004 who acted for the ACTU and asbestos support groups in negotiations with James Hardie to secure an agreement which will ensure current and future victims of asbestos –related diseases would be fully compensated for years to come.Joanne is a passionate advocate and one thing that separatesJoanne from other lawyers is perspective, with her own father being exposed to asbestos working at Cockatoo IslandDockyard, she is in the unique position of seeing it from both angles.“My clients are generally people who have worked hard all their lives, and are lovely people who deserve justice. I am glad to fight for that justice and to make a difference to their lives.”

Expertise

  • Asbestos Claims
  • Dust Disease Board Appeals
  • Dust Diseases Claims
  • Compensation Claims

Career History

  • Slater and Gordon since 2008 (practice group leader)
  • 2000-2007 Watkins Tapsell (partner)
  • 1996-2000 Watkins Tapsell (lawyer)
  • 1992-1995 NSW Crown Solicitors Office (paralegal clerk)

He is Head of Department, Cardiothoracic Surgery at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney and holds the Chair of Cardiothoracic Surgery and the Bosch Chair of Surgery, University of Sydney. He has performed over 2500 adult cardiac surgical procedures ranging from coronary artery bypass to complex aortic root and arch reconstructions. He is President of the Australia and New Zealand Society of Cardiac and Thoracic Surgeons and is the Society representative to the Cardiac Surgery National Database. He is the Co-Chair of the Institute of Academic Surgery at RPAH where he also oversees the robotic surgical program. He heads the National MBS Taskforce Review for Cardiac Surgery and has held various positions in the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons and Royal Prince Alfred Hospital.

Professor Bannon’s teaching responsibilities are currently to all years of the Graduate Medical Program at Sydney Medical School, University of Sydney. He supervises local and international Doctorate, Masters and Honours students as well as international elective students. He is the Co Editor-in-Chief of The Annals of Cardiothoracic Surgery and a Director of the CORE Group for International Collaborative Research. Professor Bannon has published widely in books, journals and conference proceedings on cardiothoracic surgery, basic science and evidence based medicine.

He has a particular passion for translational research in the areas of congenital aortic and mitral valve disease, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, biomaterials and biocompatibility, limitation of blood product usage in cardiac surgery, the inflammatory response to bypass and the development of academic surgical careers. He is a current Chief Investigator on NHMRC and NHF grants for biomaterials and congenital heart disease research as well as a current NHMRC CRE grant on mechanical circulatory support. His role in the CRE is to produce NHMRC Clinical Practice Guidelines and measure their dissemination, adoption and outcomes. He personally oversees more than $500,000 worth of research funding annually. His Department currently runs 16 clinical trials amongst many other laboratory and clinically based projects.

Professor Clifford F. Hughes

AO MBBS FRACS FACC FACS FCSANZ

Professor Cliff Hughes is President of the International Society for Quality in Health Care. Until March 2015 he was the Chief Executive Officer of the Clinical Excellence Commission, a statutory health corporation established in 2004 to build capacity and design programs to promote and support improvement in quality and safety for health services across NSW. He has been chairman or member of numerous Australian state and federal committees associated with quality, safety and research in clinical practice for health care services. He has held various positions in the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons, including Senior Examiner in Cardiothoracic Surgery and member of the College Council. In November 2015 the College bestowed upon him the highest award given to a Fellow in his lifetime, the Sir Hugh Devine Medal. He has received awards for his national and international work including an Alumni Award from the University of NSW. He has led five medical teams to China and has performed cardiac surgery in Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, India and Bangladesh. In 1998, he was made an Officer in the Order of Australia (AO) in recognition of his contributions and “service to cardiac surgery, international relationships and the community”. In June 2014, the University of NSW conferred upon him the degree of Doctor of Science, its peak academic award.

Professor Jeffrey Braithwaite

BA, MIR (Hons), MBA, DipLR, PhD, FIML, FCHSM, FFPHRCP (UK), FAcSS (UK), Hon FRACMA, FAHMS

Professor Jeffrey Braithwaite, BA, MIR (Hons), MBA, DipLR, PhD, FIML, FCHSM, FFPHRCP (UK), FAcSS (UK), Hon FRACMA, FAHMS is Founding Director, Australian Institute of Health Innovation, Director, Centre for Healthcare Resilience and Implementation Science, and Professor of Health Systems Research, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Macquarie University. His research examines the changing nature of health systems, attracting funding of more than AUD$131 million (EUR€81.8 million, GBP£70.8 million).

He has contributed over 470 peer-reviewed publications presented at international and national conferences on more than 915 occasions, including 97 keynote addresses. His research appears in journals such as JAMA, British Medical Journal, The Lancet, BMC Medicine, BMJ Quality & Safety, and International Journal for Quality in Health Care. He has received numerous national and international awards for his teaching and research.

He is interested in the Anthropocene and the impact of human activity on human and species’ health, population and climate. He blogs at http://www.jeffreybraithwaite.com/new-blog/.

Further details are available at his Wikipedia entry: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeffrey_Braithwaite.

Ms. Michelle Sloane

BA MA MBA CMAHRI MAPsS​

Michelle’s background is in psychology and human resources working for many years in senior executive positions at Westpac, IBM and Unilever. Twenty years ago she established a human resources management consulting practice, Diversity Management, and led that organisation for 16 years. Michelle has worked extensively in the areas of change management, organisational analysis and design, human resource management, program management, stakeholder engagement as well as leadership development and training.

Michelle has a Master of Business Administration from the University of Technology, a Master of Arts (Psychology) from the University of Sydney and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of New South Wales. In addition Michelle is a Graduate of the Institute of Company Directors (GAICD).

Michelle has also been a Councillor for the City of Willoughby in Sydney. During her time as Councillor and Deputy Mayor, she has worked tirelessly with the local community advocating across a range of local and state-wide issues. Her interest in local government was developed over many years as a very active volunteer in her local community.

Professor Paul G. Bannon

MBBS PhD FRACS

Professor Paul Bannon is the Chair of The Baird Institute for Applied Heart and Lung Surgical Research, a not-for-profit medical research institute established in 2001, to improve the outcomes and better the lives of those undergoing heart and lung surgery.

He is Head of Department, Cardiothoracic Surgery at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney and holds the Chair of Cardiothoracic Surgery and the Bosch Chair of Surgery, University of Sydney. He has performed over 2500 adult cardiac surgical procedures ranging from coronary artery bypass to complex aortic root and arch reconstructions. He is President of the Australia and New Zealand Society of Cardiac and Thoracic Surgeons and is the Society representative to the Cardiac Surgery National Database. He is the Co-Chair of the Institute of Academic Surgery at RPAH where he also oversees the robotic surgical program. He heads the National MBS Taskforce Review for Cardiac Surgery and has held various positions in the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons and Royal Prince Alfred Hospital.

Professor Bannon’s teaching responsibilities are currently to all years of the Graduate Medical Program at Sydney Medical School, University of Sydney. He supervises local and international Doctorate, Masters and Honours students as well as international elective students. He is the Co Editor-in-Chief of The Annals of Cardiothoracic Surgery and a Director of the CORE Group for International Collaborative Research. Professor Bannon has published widely in books, journals and conference proceedings on cardiothoracic surgery, basic science and evidence based medicine.

He has a particular passion for translational research in the areas of congenital aortic and mitral valve disease, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, biomaterials and biocompatibility, limitation of blood product usage in cardiac surgery, the inflammatory response to bypass and the development of academic surgical careers. He is a current Chief Investigator on NHMRC and NHF grants for biomaterials and congenital heart disease research as well as a current NHMRC CRE grant on mechanical circulatory support. His role in the CRE is to produce NHMRC Clinical Practice Guidelines and measure their dissemination, adoption and outcomes. He personally oversees more than $500,000 worth of research funding annually. His Department currently runs 16 clinical trials amongst many other laboratory and clinically based projects.