2—4 MARCH 2023
PharmCare 2023

Invited speakers

Invited speakers


Staff Specialist Geriatrician and Director of Training in Geriatric Medicine, Royal Hobart Hospital, Hobart, Tas

Dr Blair Adamszewski is a clinican educator and Geriatrician based at the Royal Hobart Hospital (RHH) in Tasmania.  After graduating from the University of Tasmania he undertook advanced training at Alfred Health and then worked as a Fellow in Geriatric Medicine at Monash Health, Melbourne.  He returned to work at the RHH as a staff specialist in 2014 where is he currently based in the Acute Older Persons Unit.

Blair is the Director of Training in Geriatric Medicine at the RHH and is a Senior Lecturer with the University of Tasmania (UTAS).  He has a research interest in adverse drug events in older persons and clinical interests include delirium, dementia, movement disorders, continence and pain.

Associate Professor Jane Alty


Associate Professor Jane Alty qualified in Medicine from the University of Cambridge and trained as a Neurologist in the UK. She specialises in movement disorders, cognitive disorders and digital biomarkers of neurodegenerative disorders. She undertook a Movement Disorders Fellowship at Monash Medical Centre, Australia and was conferred Doctorate of Medicine by the University of York for her research thesis on Parkinson’s bradykinesia. She was appointed Consultant Neurologist at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust in 2013 where she led the regional dystonia service, managed advanced Parkinson’s and provided second opinions on 'tricky tremors'.

She moved to Australia in 2019 as an Academic Neurologist and was awarded a 5-year NHMRC Ideas grant to lead a research program in pre-clinical Alzheimer's disease and developing computer tests of brain health. She is Co-Director of the ISLAND clinic, a one stop State-wide cognitive assessment clinic in Tasmania and also works in the specialist Movement Disorders clinic at the Royal Hobart Hospital.

Twitter: @janealty1

Maria Berbecaru

Embedded Aged Care Pharmacist, Consultant Pharmacy Services, Lindisfarne, Tas

Maria Berbecaru commenced her career in Community Pharmacy and is now an Embedded Residential Clinical Pharmacist who is working across two residential aged care facilities (RACFs) in Lindisfarne, Tasmania. She is responsible for coordinating medicines supply and clinical services across both RACFs. Maria regularly performs Residential Medication Management Reviews (RMMRs), medication swallowing reviews, three monthly psychotropic reviews, medication reconciliations at the facilities as well as occasional Home Medicines Reviews (HMRs) for older community patients and continues to practice as a Community Pharmacist. Areas of interest include deprescribing, medication safety during transition of care and palliative care.

Associate Professor Juanita Breen

Associate professor of dementia Studies, wicking dementia centre for research and education, college of health and medicine, university of tasmania; consultant pharmacist, Aged Care quality and safety commission, hobart, tas

Associate Professor Juanita Breen has an extensive background in community pharmacy, as an accredited pharmacist and in aged care research. Juanita worked in the UK as a prescribing support pharmacist in the early 2000’s, completing a Masters’ degree in older people and decision making around medication. After her PhD at the University of Tasmania, she worked as a Senior Lecturer at the Wicking Dementia Centre. Juanita developed the RedUSe (Reducing Use of Sedatives) program in 2008, the first national intervention aimed at reducing antipsychotic and benzodiazepine use in residential Aged Care. To date, the program has been run in over 350 Australian homes and has been recognised with both international and national awards; including the Stawell award for the most impactful paper published in the Medical Journal of Australia during 2018/19. Dr Breen won the Outstanding Achiever award at the Tasmanian Community Awards in 2018 and presented her research at the Royal Commission into Aged Care in May 2019 and at the Senate review into the legislation Restraint Principles.  She now consults for the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission, provides education to service providers, does a few medication reviews and continues to research psychotropic use in care settings.

Twitter: @WestburyJuanita

David Brennan

Chief executive officer, Care2serve and Carers tasmania, hobart, tas

David is CEO Carers Tasmania, the state’s peak body for informal carers, where it was recently successful in lobbying for the introduction of legislated carer recognition. He is also CEO of its wholly-owned service arm, Care2Serve,  which provides Carer Gateway services across Tasmania. Through Carer Gateway, the state’s more than 80,000 informal carers receive free information, advice and supports to sustain them in their caring roles for someone with disability, illness or who is frail or aged.

David has held senior leadership roles in the public, private and non-profit sectors in Tasmania and Queensland. His experience also includes eight years working in the Middle East, Africa and central Asia. His broad sector experience includes learning and development, industrial relations, public policy, and professional association management. He has held senior leadership roles for more than 20 years.

David holds an MBA in leadership and human resources, is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and is a Fellow of the Institute of Managers and Leaders. He also holds accreditations in coaching, psychometric testing and leadership development.

June Chan

Clinical Pharmacist, Residential Aged Care District Assessment and Referral (RADAR), Metro North Health, Brisbane, QLD

June Chan is passionate about the care of older persons and has extensive experience both within the hospital and community aged care settings. She has over 15 years’ experience working in Queensland Health hospitals and has also conducted HMRs as an accredited pharmacist for the past 10 years. In 2018, June began her current role as pharmacist for the Metro North RADAR Service in Brisbane, which is a hospital-based Residential Aged Care Support Service (RaSS) that provides Emergency and hospital substitutive care to people living in Residential Aged Care Facilities. As one of Australia’s first pharmacists to work within a hospital-based RaSS, June has enjoyed the privilege of establishing and developing the role of the RaSS pharmacist, in partnership with aged care colleagues and consumers. June has also been a leader in clinical education through involvement in Queensland Health hospital pharmacy, medical and nursing education, as well as contributing to the University of Queensland School of Pharmacy and Pharmacist Accreditation training programs.

Belinda Free

Nurse Practitioner Wound Management, Royal Hobart Hospital, Hobart, Tas 

Belinda has worked at Royal Hobart Hospital for 18 years, first as RN on surgical ward, then part-time in the outpatient wound and plastics clinic and part time in an Aged Care Facility.  For the last 10 years Belinda has worked full time at Royal Hobart Hospital as a Wound Clinical Nurse Consultant then Nurse Practitioner after completing masters of Nursing in 2018.  More recently, Belinda has expanded her scope of practice working with Hospital in the Home and the Community Rapid Response Service, and has just set up a private wound consulting and education business.

Dr Nick Harkness

Head of Department, Respiratory Medicine, Royal Hobart Hospital, Hobart, Tas 

Dr Nick Harkness is a Respiratory Physician and the current Director of the Department of Respiratory Medicine at the Royal Hobart Hospital (RHH). He has expertise and interest in medical administration, evidence-based practice, and quality assurance. He currently holds an associate fellowship with RACMA (Royal Australasian College of Medical Administrators).  His clinical focus areas include lung cancer and post-lung transplant care.

Debbie Hawthorne

GP pharmacist, HMR pharmacist, Telehealth Pharmacist, researcher and Advocate, wangaratta, Vic

Debbie Hawthorne is a rural Victorian consultant pharmacist who works in a variety of primary health care multidisciplinary teams. This normally involves practicing as a GP pharmacist in Wangaratta, a Telehealth pharmacist for Beyond Pain and PharmOnline as well as running her Home Medication Review business, Deborah Hawthorne Consultancy. This medication review work takes Debbie throughout picturesque North East Victoria and border communities.  

As an Adjunct Senior Lecturer at the University of Western Australia, Debbie mentors masters students, investigates deprescribing, embedded pharmacists as well as other areas of pharmacy research. She is known to enjoy referencing systematic reviews due to a prior background in information management as a tertiary institution librarian. She is also heavily involved in medication review research as an inaugural member of the research group COHERENT. 

In her spare time, Debbie regularly contributes to Murray PHN HealthPathways as a Subject Matter Expert and is currently completing 1000 hours of the required diabetes education practice to become a credentialled diabetes educator. Outside of diabetes, other special interests include chronic disease management, chronic pain and intellectual disability and autism care. Debbie is passionate about acting as an advocate for Australia’s medication review and embedded pharmacists through the creation and administration of the facebook group ‘Consultant Pharmacists Australia'. Through this platform, she regularly mentors pharmacists throughout Australia in gaining and developing innovative pharmacy roles.

Twitter: @drhurwitz87

Dr Daniel Hoyle

Lecturer in Therapeutics and Pharmacy Practice, School of Pharmacy and Pharmacology, University of Tasmania, Hobart, Tas

Dr. Daniel Hoyle is a Lecturer in Therapeutics and Pharmacy Practice in the School of Pharmacy and Pharmacology at the University of Tasmania. His research focuses on investigating clinical and economic outcomes associated with deprescribing in older people and exploring pharmacogenetic-informed approaches to improve the safety of medication withdrawal. Currently, Dr. Hoyle is the principal investigator on a project to improve the management of atrial fibrillation in patients with dementia by examining the utilisation pattern of anticoagulants and related clinical outcomes (e.g., stroke, bleeding events). He is also leading research to study the relationship between variations in benzodiazepine metabolism and the severity and frequency of withdrawal symptoms.

Margaret Jordan

General Practice Pharmacist, Woonona Medical Practice, Woonona, NSW

Margaret is an Advanced Practice Pharmacist and a member of the SHPA Transitions of Care and Primary Care Leadership Committee. She was the SHPA representative for the TGA Opioid Regulatory Advisory Group, 2019-2020, which initiated the legislative changes to opioid prescribing and availability. She has had many roles in hospital pharmacy: the most recent as project pharmacist for an opioid stewardship program in a Sydney local health district and as the senior pharmacist for the Drug Committee in the Illawarra-Shoalhaven district. Margaret endeavours to develop and implement strategies to reduce the risk of harm from high-risk medicines. She collaboratively updated area-wide heparin management and redesigned anaphylaxis management across the local health district, prior to state-wide coordinated activities in these fields. She introduced anticoagulant management in three aged care facilities and a general practice. Margaret began as a general practice pharmacist in 2015, and this has been her sole clinical position since 2019. She has established medication stewardship in the practice – initially for opioids, followed by benzodiazepines and  antipsychotic agents. The local primary health network commissioned her and the practice team to mentor other general practices throughout their introduction of coordinated opioid and benzodiazepine stewardship activities.

Margaret is currently a PhD candidate with the University of Sydney.

David Laffan

Assistant Secretary, Pharmacy Programs Branch, Australian Government department of health and aged care, canberra, ACT

David is the Assistant Secretary, Pharmacy Programs Branch, Department of Health and Aged Care. He has over 15 years’ experience as a senior public servant in policy, program and regulatory roles. As Assistant Secretary for Pharmacy he has responsibility for the 7th Community Pharmacy Agreement, section 100 programs under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme and the National Diabetes Services Scheme.

Sue Leitch

Co-Chair, ELder Abuse action Australia, Hobart, Tas

Sue currently works in social policy specialising in ageing with a strong focus on human rights.  She is a visual artist, studying at UTAS in FineArts.

She is the past CEO of COTA Tasmania a position she held for 10 years. Areas of focus during that time have included eliminating ageism, prevention of elder abuse, intergenerational projects, and social and health policy, with a focus on consumer engagement, digital and health literacy and human rights.

She is currently Co-Chair of EAAA, and a director on the board of NARI (National Ageing Research Institute). She is a member of the Community Council of the Primary Health Network Tasmania.

She has a Masters of Ageing from University of Melbourne and Bachelor of Pharmacy from at UTAS in the early 80’s.

She has been Chair of a disability provider in Tasmania and held senior management and board roles in the pharmacy sector in a number of states and territories.  She was a past Board member of The Pharmacy Board of Tasmania and held executive positions on state committees of The Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (Tas) and The Pharmacy Guild of Australia.  She was an early accredited pharmacist when the role was first introduced and has conducted Home and Residential Medication reviews.

Twitter: @SueLeitch1

Adam Livori

Team Leader - Medical Specialties and Ambulatory Care, Grampians Health, Ballarat, Vic; PhD Student - Centre for Medicine Use and Safety, Monash University, Melbourne, Vic

Adam has over 10 years of clinical experience in a variety of settings including nuclear pharmacy, cardiology, oncology and stroke care. From an initial degree in nuclear medicine, he went on to complete a bachelor of pharmacy and an honours degree in nuclear pharmacy. He is passionate about cardiology pharmacy, research and ensuring patients receive high value, evidence-based care. His Master of Clinical Pharmacy research was on interventional cardiology and pharmacist outpatient clinics. He co-lead the development of Australia’s first clinical practice standard in cardiology pharmacy through the Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia, and is the anti-thrombotic lead for the upcoming Cardiac Society of Australia and New Zealand/Heart Foundation guidelines on acute coronary syndromes.
He is currently undertaking a PhD at Monash University, and will utilise data linkage, pharmacoepidemiology, biostatistics and health economics to assess for patterns and predictors of clinical outcomes in myocardial infarction and atrial fibrillation. He has published in both national and international cardiology and pharmacy practice journals exploring medicines optimisation and defining new models of care to enhance patient safety and experience.
His current clinical roles involve establishing a novel rapid access atrial fibrillation clinic in regional and remote Victoria, where he is developing and testing a pharmacist-physician model of care. He is a senior cardiology pharmacist working in the coronary care unit and holds teaching positions for pharmacists, nurses and medical registrars at Grampians Health, Monash University, LaTrobe University, and the Australian Centre for Heart Health.

Twitter: @cardiopharmnerd

Dr Lisa Mitchell

Geriatrician and General Physician, Barwon Health; Medical Lead, Barwon Health Clinical Ethics Service, Geelong, Vic

Lisa Mitchell is a medical doctor specialising in the care of older people.  She has an interest in clinical ethics and is a researcher in ageism.

LinkedIn: Dr Lisa Mitchell

Professor Mark Naunton

Head of School, School of Health Sciences and Professor of Pharmacy, University of Canberra; Board director, pharmaceutical Society of Australia; executive member and treasurer, council of pharmacy schools Australia and new Zealand, canberra, ACT 

Professor Mark Naunton is Head of the School of Health Sciences and immediate past Head of Pharmacy at the University of Canberra.  

Mark's career in pharmacy includes working as: academic, locum, managing, and a consultant pharmacist in Tasmania, Northern Territory, and the Australian Capital Territory. Mark is a registered and practicing pharmacist and held several medication review contracts with aged care facilities in the NT and ACT.  Mark enjoys teaching and strives for excellence by encouraging students to reach their highest potential.  Mark has international experience and was a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Groningen, The Netherlands. Mark’s areas of research/clinical interests are broad and include: medication safety, aged care, medication adherence, infectious disease, quality use of medicines, travel medicine, pharmaco-economics, and pharmacy education. Mark possesses significant experience in designing and conducting clinical trials and has collaborated with research groups nationally and internationally. Mark is currently chief investigator on MRFF clinical trials investigating the effectiveness of integrating pharmacists within residential aged care homes.  Mark is also a chief investigator on an NHMRC-funded trial investigating the use of nitazoxanide in the treatment of acute diarrhea in Aboriginal children. Mark also provides medico-legal opinion to legal firms.

Twitter: @marknaunton

Dr Emily Reeve

Senior research fellow, Centre for Medicine Use and Safety, Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Monash University; NHMRC Emerging Leadership Fellow, Melbourne, Vic

Dr Emily Reeve is a pharmacist and Senior Research Fellow in the Centre for Medicine Use and Safety, at Monash University. Dr Reeve is President Elect, Australian Deprescribing Network (ADeN) and author of key articles on deprescribing in leading international journals including JAMA Internal Medicine and Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. Dr Reeve is currently supported by a National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Investigator Grant. Her research focuses on optimising medication use through deprescribing in older adults and people living with dementia. She has a particular interest in consumer attitudes towards deprescribing and the development of deprescribing guidelines. Her focus is on Health Services research with methodological expertise in a number of areas including systematic reviews, qualitative research, questionnaire development and validation, clinical practice guideline development and implementation.

Twitter: @Reeve_Research

Distinguished Professor James Vickers

Director, WIcking Dementia Research and education centre, university of Tasmania, Hobart, tas

Distinguished Professor James Vickers is the Director of the Wicking Dementia Research and Education Centre. Professor Vickers is a Past-President of the Australasian Neuroscience Society, and has previously held the roles of Head of the School of Medicine (2010–13, 2019-2021) and Chair of Pathology (2003-2018) at the University of Tasmania. Professor Vickers is a Board Member of the Dementia Australia Research Foundation and Glenview Community Services. He has a research track record in the neurosciences, including acquired neuronal injury, neurodegenerative disease and plasticity, as well as health services research and cohort-based interventions. He has published over 190 research papers. Professor Vickers has been involved in developing a range of health courses at the University of Tasmania, including Massive Open Online Courses on dementia.

Twitter: @JamesCVickers

Dr Stephanie Ward


 As a geriatrician, Dr Stephanie Ward has worked across multiple settings including inpatient acute and subacute care, specialist memory clinics, and in outreach to residential aged care facilities and in the community. She has a particular interest in the diagnosis and management of dementia, which inspires her research work into dementia risk factors, especially sleep apnoea, and in the quality of care in dementia. She is the clinical lead for the Australian Dementia Network (ADNeT) Registry, the first clinical quality registry for dementia in Australia. 

She is also passionate about the benefits of intergenerational contact and has been an expert on several intergenerational experiments televised on the ABC's Emmy-award winning "Old people's Home for 4 Year Olds, and Teenagers" series. 

Dr Melanie Wroth

Chief Clinical Advisor, Aged care quality and safety commission, Sydney, NSW

Dr Wroth is the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission’s Chief Clinical Advisor and commenced with the Commission in 2019.

Dr Wroth graduated in Medicine from the University of Sydney in 1981 and became a Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians in 1992. She began her longstanding involvement in medical care for older Australians in 1990.

Dr Wroth is a Senior Staff Specialist in Geriatric Medicine at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital. She has been extensively engaged in clinical teaching especially in Geriatric Medicine, and is a Clinical Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Medicine and Health, University of Sydney. She has been a consultant to the NSW Medical Council, and is a senior member of the Guardianship Division of the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal.

Sara Yeganeh

Advanced Sexual Health and HIV Pharmacist – Pharmacy Team Leader, Metro North Sexual Health and HIV Services, Brisbane, Qld

Sara Yeganeh is an experienced pharmacist of 16 years and has worked as specialist sexual health and HIV pharmacist for the last 12 years.  After a decade based at Cairns Sexual Health, Sara moved to Brisbane in 2021 to work in a Brisbane-based, large case-load metropolitan sexual health and HIV service. Sara's time working in this field has comprised of clinical work, coordinating research, providing education and team leadership. Sara has completed various courses in sexual health, HIV and blood borne viruses including completing the HIV S100 prescriber course in HIV medicine. Sara has also completed the advanced health professional course to be able to request pathology in QLD health and accreditation as a pharmacist consultant via the Australian Association of Consultant Pharmacists. Sara’s passion lies in continuously improving clinical practice to meet international standards while providing a non-judgmental, easily accessible and wholistic approach to patient care.

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