Medical advisers directory
Avant has a diverse team of state-based, nationally integrated medical advisers to provide peer support to our members and assist with the clinical understanding of claims.
Medical Adviser/Claims Manager, Professional Conduct
Qualifications: MA, MBChB, DA, DRANZCOG, FRACGP, FACRRM
Speciality: General Practice
Andrew has been with Avant four days a week since 2021 and is an experienced general practitioner with a background in rural medicine including obstetrics, anaesthesia and emergency medicine.
Andrew works one day a week as a general practitioner in St Kilda, Victoria.
Phone: 0487 291 293
Dr David Banfield
Senior Medical Adviser and Claims Manager.
Qualifications: BMed LLB(Hons), MPH MMedSc, DCH, FACEM, FACLM
Speciality: Emergency medicine
Phone: 0428 547 383
David has been with Avant part time since 2020 and has over nine years’ experience in emergency medicine. He has predominately worked as a clinician in a busy emergency department in Canberra and has clinical interests in resuscitation and acute medicine.
He has an interest in pragmatic medical education and previously was director of emergency medicine training, providing direct supervision to Australasian College for Emergency Medicine trainees. He has also provided formal medical education for advanced life support and advanced paediatric life support courses.
David also has a law degree from Queensland University of Technology, holds a practicing certificate as a legal practitioner and is a fellow of the Australasian College for Legal Medicine, so he is uniquely qualified to assist members by providing medical support and support through the Medico-legal Advisory Service.
Dr John Campbell
Senior Medical Adviser and Claims Manager, Medico-Legal Advisory Service
Qualifications: MBBS (Monash) FRANZCOG FRCOG
Speciality: Obstetrics and gynaecology
Phone: 03 9026 5973
John has been with Avant since 2008 and has over 43 years’ of specialist practice experience in Obstetrics and Gynaecology.
He has an interest in clinical education and teaches at a postgraduate and undergraduate level.
Before his retirement, John worked as a consultant at Monash Medical Centre and as an examiner for RANZCOG, AMC and Monash University. He also was a Honorary Senior Lecturer at Monash University and Past President of RANZCOG and has been heavily involved with many governance and quality review committees.
Dr Rosa Canalese
Senior Medical Adviser
Qualifications: MBBS, Dip Paed, FRACGP, MP, Grad Cert University Teaching
Specialty: General Practice
Phone: 02 9260 9081
Rosa has been with Avant since 2015 and combines part-time work as a senior medical adviser with clinical practice and teaching in general practice. She has over 30 years experience in the development and implementation of education and training curricula and programs with RACGP, and has been involved in RACGP selection, examination and assessment.
Rosa assists with member claims and provides support through the Medico-Legal Advisory Service. She is also involved in developing and delivering content for Avant’s education and risk program and resources.
Patrick has worked for Avant for six years as a claims manager and medical adviser before joining the QLD Medical Board in 2016. He returned to Avant in 2021 in advocacy, and develops articles and presentations for Avant members on medico-legal issues.
Patrick has extensive clinical experience in general practice and hospital and emergency medicine. He has been involved with RACGP Hospital Medicine Network and medical research ethics committees.
Adrian has been with Avant since 2016 as a claims manager and medical adviser.
Dr Guest has recently retired from clinical practice with over 35 years’ experience in Obstetrics and Gynaecology. He was previously the head of the department of gynaecology at St Andrews War Memorial Hospital, Brisbane.
Dr Susan Hertzberg
Senior Consultant Medical Adviser
Qualifications: MBBS (UNSW), Masters Health Law (USYD), Masters Bioethics (USYD), FACEM
Specialty: Emergency medicine
Phone: 02 9640 1140
Susan has been with Avant since 2016 and has over 25 years’ experience as an emergency physician.
Susan is a senior staff specialist at Prince of Wales hospital.
Dr Joe Lizzio
Senior Consultant Medical Adviser and Claims Manager
Qualifications: MBBS (Syd), LLB (UNSW), FRACS
Speciality: Medical administration, general practice, pre-hospital emergency medicine, general and colo-rectal surgery
Phone: 02 9260 9145
Joe has been with Avant since 2004 as a claims manager and medical adviser. He obtained a law degree in 2006 and has maintained his practising certificate as a solicitor since then. He has been involved predominantly in civil matters and continues to assist in disciplinary, coronial, employment and training disputes.
He has been registered general and colorectal surgeon since 1985. He has stepped back from clinical medicine and currently occupies an administrative role as a VMO at Sutherland hospital.
Medical Adviser and Claims Manager
Qualifications: MBBS, FRACGP, DCH
Speciality: General practice
Dr Hirruthyaa Manivasagan joined Avant in 2023. She has a diploma in speech and drama from Trinity College London and a degree in medicine from Monash University, which she obtained in 2013. She was awarded fellowship with the RACGP in 2018.
Dr Manivasagan continues to work as a GP in a group practice with an interest in child health, education, and mentoring GP trainees.
Qualifications: MBBS FRACP MPH PhD
Speciality: Adult general and renal medicine/peri-operative medicine
Dr Menahem is an adult renal physician working in the public and private sectors and undertakes general and peri-operative medicine supporting orthopaedic and general surgery.
He is involved in undergraduate and postgraduate teaching and education through Monash University and is a supervisor of intern training at Latrobe Regional Hospital.
He recently completed a four-year appointment as a practitioner member of the Victorian Board of the Medical Board of Australia. Until recently, he served as a panel member of the Professional Services Review Board.
Ushma has worked part time with Avant since 2017 and has over 20 years’ experience in general practice and a strong clinical research background. She combines her work as senior medical adviser with her pharmaceutical clinical research and work as the clinical editor for Healthpathways.
Dr Kelly Nickels
Claims Team Manager - Professional Conduct VIC/Senior Medical Adviser
Qualifications: MBBS (Hons) (Monash) MHlth&MedLaw (Melb)
Speciality: General Practice
Dr Nickels works full time with Avant, having started in 2011 as a medical adviser and claims manager. She combines a medical background with Masters of Health and Medical Law and over 10 years of medicolegal experience to assist doctors to understand and find their way through an often bewildering legal process. She is particularly involved in doctors' wellbeing and MBS compliance.
She has experience in all aspects of general practice with clinical interests in paediatrics and mental health.
Dr David Pakchung
Head of Practice Claims (Civil)
Qualifications: MBBS (Syd) MHA (UNSW) GCAppLaw (Qld) CertIT DipRACOG AssocDipAppSc (Ambulance), FRACMA
Speciality: Medical administration, general practice, pre-hospital emergency medicine
Phone: 07 3309 6810
David is Head of Practice Claims (Civil) in Queensland, working full time. He has been with Avant since 1998, managing all aspects of Avant matters including civil and professional conduct, Medical Board, coronial, Medicare, employment and criminal matters. He has been a doctor for over 35 years and combining clinical and medico-legal practice for over 20 years. He continues to practice in pre-hospital emergency medicine and general practice and is the current President of the Medico-Legal Society of Queensland.
Qualifications: BMBS, DCH, FRACGP, Cert Women’s Health
Speciality: General Practice
Dr Parsons joined Avant part time in 2021 as a medical adviser. For the past five years she has been the Clinical Director at ProHealthCare Stirling.
She has over 23 years clinical experience in general practice with a special interest in paediatrics, women’s health, shared obstetric care, palliative care and aged care.
Victoria joined Avant in 2018 as the rotational doctor-in-training medical adviser. Once she completed her rotation, Victoria joined the Risk Advisory Team as a risk adviser.
Victoria combines her work at Avant with general practice, and she has an interest in women’s and sexual health, shared obstetric care, paediatrics and cardiovascular medicine. She also works at a Tresillian Family Care Centre and the Mass Vaccination Hub.
Marisa has been with Avant since 2017 and is an experienced general practitioner.
After completing her undergraduate studies in 2000, Marisa achieved FRACGP and continues to work in general practice. She has also undertaken rural relieving for Queensland Health, and trains medical students through University of Queensland
Marisa has also worked as a medical advisor for the Department of Health (Medicare) and the Australia Defense Force.
Medical Adviser, Claims Manager
Qualifications: MBBS, FANZCA
Amanda has been with Avant since 2021 and is an anaesthetist with experience in plastic surgery, urogynaecology, endoscopy, cardiology and obstetric and hyperbaric medicine.
Outside of Avant, Amanda regularly works in after-hours anaesthesia for obstetrics and general surgical emergencies. She has previously held public hospital appointments in Perth at King Edward Hospital for Women and Fremantle Hospital from 2007-2009. Also, a medical officer in the Army and Navy reserve. During her fellowship training, Amanda completed terms in all anaesthetic sub-specialties including, paediatrics, neurosurgery, trauma surgery and cardiothoracic surgery.
Amanda is currently undertaking a graduate law degree.
Phone: 0418 850 146
Dr Mark Woodrow
General Manager – Medical Advisory Services and Deputy Chief Medical Officer
Qualifications: MBBS, MBA, GDipAppLaw, GCertArts, EMCert(ACEM), MACLM
Speciality: Emergency medicine
Phone: 07 3309 6851
Dr Woodrow has been with Avant part time since 2016 and has over 28 years’ experience working in emergency medicine in metropolitan, regional and rural hospitals. He has undertaken postgraduate legal, ethics and business studies and assists in civil, regulatory, employment and coronial matters.
He continues to work as a part-time emergency physician and is chair of the Wesley Hospital Quality Assurance Committee. Mark is also current vice president of the Medico Legal Society of Queensland and Member of the Australasian College of Legal Medicine. He was previously an instructor in EMST and APLS and has undertaken postgraduate study in burns, toxinology, hyperbaric medicine, sports medicine, disaster management and prehospital life support.
Qualifications: FRACS, MBChB, BScMedSci
Martin is a neurosurgeon with experience in adult and paediatric neurosurgery and continues to work in private practice at Mater Hospital in Brisbane. He also has many years of experience in aviation and runs a craft distilling business.
Medical Adviser/Claims Manager
Qualifications: FACEM, FACLM, MBBS (Hons), LLB (Hons), BA, Grad Cert LP, CCPU
Speciality: Emergency medicine
Dr Jackson is an Emergency Specialist and has over 13 years broad clinical experience gained from tertiary, regional and remote medical environments across adult and paediatric emergency medicine. Her subspecialty experience includes clinical forensic medicine, point of care ultrasound, and geriatric emergency medicine. Kathleen continues her Emergency clinical practice in Southeast Queensland and enjoys teaching and mentoring both junior doctors and medical students. Prior to her medical career she studied law and was admitted as a solicitor in NSW. She has a particular interest in issues surrounding the interface of medicine and law and has undertaken research relating to mandatory reporting for medical professionals.
Kathleen is a Fellow of the Australasian College for Emergency Medicine, Fellow of the Australasian College of Legal Medicine, a member of the Australasian Society for Ultrasound Medicine and a member of the Medico Legal Society of Queensland.