Leading cancer specialist joins the Macquarie University team
Professor John Boyages, founder of the Westmead Breast Cancer Institute and BreastScreen NSW Sydney West has been appointed founding Director of the new Macquarie University Cancer Institute (MCI) and Professor of Breast Oncology at the Australian School of Advanced Medicine (ASAM).
Macquarie University Hospital opened its Cancer Treatment Care Centre almost a year ago. The comprehensive range of cancer services located at Australia's newest and most technologically advanced hospital offered a unique opportunity to offer a holistic cancer care service. Now Boyages will bring a new vision to the team, to develop a unique cancer institute. The MCI, he says, will bring together health professionals and researchers, with the patient being the central focus and “encompassing the best our people and the organisation can bring together—clinical excellence, research, education with corporate and community partnerships”.
At Westmead, Boyages built a team of over 70 staff, managed a $10 million budget and developed facilities to a value of over $20 million. He is passionate about raising the bar in cancer care through research and advanced facilities – both available to his team in the Australian School of Advanced Medicine and Macquarie University Hospital. “The University’s investment is mind blowing,” he says. “To think that I can see a patient with breast cancer on a Friday and have them ready to start radiotherapy the following Wednesday or Thursday, with a letter back to the GP and referring surgeon by Friday! I wish this were the case everywhere.”
During the 1990s, Boyages built the largest breast screening service in Australia, the BreastScreen Sydney West program. At its peak, the Unit screened over 60,000 women annually, across an area that extended from Bowral to Berowra and Auburn to Katoomba. In 2009, Boyages and his team saw the first ’BCI sunflower clinics‘ open in four Myer lingerie departments in the west and north-west of Sydney, as well as four public hospitals. BreastScreen Sydney West was the first breast screening service in Australia to be able to transmit digital images from all screening sites to its central image reading centre, seconds after a woman finished her mammogram.
Since 2010 he has been advising the UK Government on why breast cancer mortality rates are much higher in the UK than in Australia, and continuing to contribute to research on breast oncology through more than 135 research and clinical articles.
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Greg Welsh: phone:+61 407 200 474
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Macquarie University Hospital Chief Operating Officer Wins National Award
Sheer determination and the ability to manage the delivery of the operational aspects of the state-of-the-art Macquarie University Hospital, on time and on budget has seen Evan Rawstron win the inaugural APHA Valuing Private Hospitals Staff Award for Quality, Excellence and Innovation for an Individual in a Non-Clinical Role.
The scale of effort involved in getting Australia's first and only private university hospital up and running in six months was colossal. Mr Rawstron oversaw the development of processes and implementation of all technology and systems that would enable the hospital to run day-to-day as well as the recruitment, induction and training of 450 staff who came from across Australia.
A capacity to identify and utilise the unique skills of his team, allowed Mr Rawstron to pool together the collective knowledge to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of other operating methods and develop leading edge processes.
As a result of Mr Rawstron’s outstanding management and fastidious tracking, the construction and fit out of this fully digital hospital was delivered ready for its first operation on 15 June 2010. The hospital has set the benchmark for the provision of health care services in the private hospital sector.
"I would like to congratulate Evan," said Michael Roff, Chief Executive Officer, Australian Private Hospitals Association. "The innovation, drive and determination to ensure that Macquarie University Hospital was open for patients on time and on budget is a credit to him and this hospital."
"Each year, private hospitals treat more than 3 million Australians and it is the work of staff such as Evan, whose efforts behind the scenes often goes unnoticed, that allows us to continue providing quality, personalised health care to Australians when they need it," said Mr Roff.
Mr Rawstron is one of three finalists in this category that recognises staff who have excelled in the provision of administrative, hospitality or maintenance services; all areas that underpin the care provided to private hospital patients.
As the winner of the Award for Excellence and Innovation in a Non-Clinical Role (Individual), Mr Rawstron will receive $10,000 in prize money, thanks to Award sponsor HESTA Super Fund, as well as the respect and recognition of staff at an event held at Macquarie University Hospital.
Date: Tuesday, 5 April
Location: Macquarie University Hospital, 3 Technology Place, Macquarie University
Mr Rawstron will be available for media comment as will Michael Roff, Chief Executive Officer, Australian Private Hospitals Association and Robert Glynn, Chief Executive, Macquarie University Hospital.
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Australia's first ever Gamma Knife, located at the nation's newest and most technologically-advanced hospital - Macquarie University Hospital in Sydney - treated its first patient yesterday.
For certain types of tumours and neurological disorders, the Gamma Knife provides better outcomes for patients with fewer complications in a same day treatment with a lower total treatment cost compared to more traditional invasive neurosurgery techniques.
Consistent with Macquarie University Hospital's approach to medicine and improving care for patients, Gamma Knife treatment is delivered by a team of leading neurosurgeons, radiation oncologists, medical physicists and nurses using the best technology available. Genesis Cancer Care is delivering the Gamma Knife service on behalf of Macquarie University Hospital.
The Gamma Knife is a non-invasive neurosurgical tool for treating brain cancer and a range of other brain-related disorders. Despite its name, it is not a cutting implement and there is no blood or incision involved in treatment. Instead, some 192 radiation beams from cobalt-60 sources converge with high accuracy on the target inside the brain. Each individual beam has low intensity and therefore does not affect the tissue through which it passes on its way to the target. The beams converge in an isocentre where the cumulative radiation intensity becomes extremely high.
Neurosurgeon Dr John Fuller, who treated the first patient in Australia with the device, said Gamma Knife treatment is very different to traditional neurosurgery.
"Although our first patient had tumours in multiple parts of his brain, we only needed to do one operation lasting an hour or so, no scalpel was used, the patient was awake throughout the entire procedure and only received a local anaesthetic, and he went home last night having been treated in an out-patient setting."
Dr Fuller said the low impact nature of the treatment on the patient has a range of flow-on benefits for their families, the medical treatment team and the wider healthcare system.
"Patients who receive Gamma Knife treatment have fewer complications than traditional neurosurgery patients undergoing a craniotomy reducing the need for hospitalisation and intensive care," he said.
"For patients the Gamma Knife equates to fewer treatment sessions, shorter hospital stays and less physical, mental and emotional strain. Additionally, it reduces the overall burden on the healthcare system."
One published international study shows that one Gamma Knife system can free up to 700 ICU beds per year.
Some of the conditions that can be treated with the Gamma Knife include arteriovenous malformations (AVMs), abnormal arteries and veins which in most cases form prior to birth; acoustic neuromas, benign tumours of the eighth cranial nerve; trigeminal neuralgia, a condition that affects one of the largest nerves in the head and is associated with sharp, piercing pain in the face; and other brain tumours such as, meningiomas, pituitary adenomas, and skull base tumours, as well as glioblastoma multiforme, ogliodendroglioma, astrocytomas in certain cases.
Overseas peer-reviewed studies report that Gamma Knife treatment has resulted in tumour control (elimination of further growth, tumour shrinkage or obliteration) in about 90 percent of cases.
The device's versatility is borne out by the fact that the first four patients scheduled for Gamma Knife treatment this week will each be treated for different conditions.
However, the Gamma Knife is most well-known as the preferred type of treatment globally for brain metastases, which develop in 20-40% of all cancer patients. Brain metastases are cancer that has spread (metastasised) to the brain from another site in the body, commonly the lung or breast. Around 300,000 Gamma Knife treatments will occur worldwide this year, mostly to treat patients with brain metastases.
Professor Michael Morgan, a world-renowned neurosurgeon and Dean of the Australian School of Advanced Medicine at Macquarie University said that the Gamma Knife can improve outcomes for these seriously ill patients.
"Now with the Gamma Knife we can offer treatment and along with that hope that the patient's life may not only be extended, but also that their remaining time will involve a much better quality of life," he said.
For more information on the gamma knife please call 9812 3220.
For media enquires please contact Greg Welsh, (02) 9850 7456, 0407 200 474.
Read more about Gamma Knife treatment.
The Specialist Brief – GP Educational Events
Macquarie University Hospital has hosted a number of GP events in August and September 2010. Sydney GP's joined us for interactive educational sessions led by Macquarie University specialists. As well as learning about developments in their respective fields, they had the opportunity to raise questions and discuss issues with these specialists. Some of our recent events have included:
- Gastroenterology at Macquarie University Hospital, held on 9 November 2010
- Comprehensive cancer services part 1, held on 10 August 2010
- Neurosurgery in a new academic environment, held on 17 August 2010
- Orthopaedic Surgery at Macquarie University Hospital, held on 24 August 2010
A Calendar for 2011 sessions will be posted in the near future.
Macquarie University Hospital: a new type of hospital for Australia
When it opens on June 26, Macquarie University Hospital will become the first private hospital in Australia to be located on a university campus. But that’s not all that makes it special.
The Hospital has two particularly defining characteristics. Firstly, it uses the latest technology in order to offer patients the very best treatment available.
Examples include Australia’s first gamma knife, a radiosurgical treatment which delivers a concentrated dose of gamma radiation to a target area in the brain with surgical precision in order to treat cancers and other brain disorders; and Australia's first intraoperative CT scanner which allows for the scanning of patients during operations so surgeons can immediately review and verify the results of the procedure.
Secondly, the Hospital’s campus location and its close relationship with the University’s Australian School of Advanced Medicine (ASAM) mean that it will become a best practice example of academic medicine. ASAM will provide advanced surgical training to leading doctors from around the world, and digital links between the Hospital and the adjoining medical school building will make it possible for doctors from the school to view operations carried out in the Hospital's operating theatres as they occur in real time.
Macquarie University Hospital will not only provide a comprehensive selection of advanced surgical services, with a particular focus on the neurosciences, and comprehensive cancer care, to patients in Sydney and throughout Australia. It will aspire to establish a new benchmark for Australian healthcare.
Macquarie University Hospital appoints intensive care services team
Macquarie University Hospital (MUH) is pleased to announce the formation of the Macquarie University Hospital Intensive Care Group, a dedicated team of specialists appointed to design and deliver the soon-to-open Hospital’s intensive care services.
The Group has already been on-site assisting the Hospital in the development of the extensive IT systems that will cover the intensive care services at the state-of-the-art facility.
The Group’s leader, Dr Michael Parr, said he and his colleagues were excited at the appointment.
“We’re looking forward to working closely not only with the Hospital in the provision of intensive care services but also with Macquarie’s Australian School of Advanced Medicine in the development of teaching and research, and intensive care curriculum,” he said.
Macquarie University Hospital CEO Robert Glynn said the Hospital was fortunate to have at its disposal intensive care experts of such a high calibre.
“This group of 11 intensive care specialists have very broad experience and qualifications across the entire intensive care services spectrum, as well as appointments at major public and private facilities. The appointment at Macquarie will allow them to focus their expertise in a private teaching capacity as well.”
The Group will establish the protocols, systems and treatment regimes across the range of specialties that will use the ICU at Macquarie, and have representation on-site seven days a week.
Macquarie University announces leadership team to manage hospital
Macquarie University has announced the appointment of an experienced senior leadership team to oversee operations at the soon-to-be-opened Macquarie University Hospital.
Those appointed to manage the Hospital have been hand-picked for their expertise and reputations in the health care sector, and collectively bring decades of experience spanning hospital administration and management, clinical care, and medical education and training.
Robert Glynn is the Hospital's foundation Chief Executive Officer and will oversee the facility's opening and day-to-day operations. Mr Glynn has worked in the health care sector for 25 years, including more than 17 years with the Ramsay Healthcare Group where he was responsible for directing 13 hospitals in Eastern Australia. Mr Glynn's former senior management positions include Chief Executive of Greenslopes Private Hospital, Chief Executive of Sunshine Coast Private Hospital, and Chief Executive of John James Memorial Hospital in Canberra.
Joining him on the Hospital's Executive is Evan Rawstron, who was appointed the Hospital's Chief Operating Officer after serving as Chief Operating Officer and Health Policy Advisor at Macquarie University's Australian School of Advanced Medicine. Mr Rawstron has worked in a number of senior roles in the New South Wales health sector, and is an alumnus of Macquarie University, the University of New South Wales and the London School of Economics, where he successfully completed studies in health policy and economics, and health administration.
The Hospital's Director of Clinical Services, Allison Carr, has been a nurse for more than 20 years and has worked extensively in the private sector, both in Sydney and Melbourne. Ms Carr has completed postgraduate studies in nursing and holds a Masters in Health Care Administration. Her previous roles include Customer Service Manager at Melbourne's St Vincent's and Mercy Private Hospitals, Director of Nursing at Frances Perry House in Melbourne, and Director of Nursing at Prince of Wales Private Hospital in Sydney.
Geoff Harders, whose former roles include managing IT services for the Victorian Department of Health (North and West Metropolitan Region), has recently been appointed to the position of Macquarie University Hospital Chief Information Officer.
In addition to the Hospital's senior management team, more than 250 doctors have now committed to the Hospital, and all senior nursing positions have been filled. An independent Board has been established to oversee the Hospital's management and the University has a presence on this governing body.
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