The Australian Skin Cancer Academy was established in 2016. It is a completely independent organisation founded by a group of specialist plastic surgeons, dermatologists, and general practitioners. The aim of the Australian Skin Cancer Academy is to provide high quality education and training in the field of skin cancer medicine and general dermatology. All of our teaching staff are Australian trained and have worked in the Australian environment for many years.
Our four plastic surgeons, Drs Dan Kennedy, Ray Goh, Lily Vrtik, and Matt Peters, are all working in the large Brisbane public hospitals as well as privately. Dan and Matt are directors of the Departments of Plastic Surgery at the Mater Public Hospital and Royal Brisbane and Womens’ Hospital, respectively. They have many years of experience in surgical management of skin cancer, and training of young graduates.
Our four dermatologists are all in private practice, as well as having public hospital placements. Dr Brian De’Ambrosis has been performing Mohs micrographic surgery for difficult to treat skin malignancies for over twenty years.
To ensure that the training we provide is both practical and relevant to the general practice community, we have Drs Paul Komarowski and Michael Donohue, general practitioners of many years standing who has been heavily involved in skin cancer work.
The philosophy of the Australian Skin Cancer Academy is that the vast majority of skin malignancy can be treated within the general practice environment. It is our belief that the people best placed to train Australian practitioners in skin cancer diagnosis and management are fellow Australian trained, and experienced medical practitioners. Australian skin cancer patients are very different to those found in other parts of the world; they have a far greater burden of background solar damage and often have a greater tendency to development of both melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer. Their management often requires a team approach with a variety of different therapeutic modalities employed.
Although only recently established, the Australian Skin Cancer Academy has already provided seminars and workshops for the Mater Public Hospital and the Australasian College of Dermatologists. Feedback from these workshops has been very positive. Further seminars and workshops are planned for the educational arm of Sullivan Nicolaides Pathology, and General Practice training organisations. We will also be providing low cost educational sessions for medical students.
The workshops we provide vary in duration and can be as short as just a few hours on a weeknight or weekend, or two day workshops. We aim to provide such at times convenient to medical practitioners, at an affordable cost. At each workshop, ASCA provides a mix of both theoretical and supervised practical surgical training under the guidance of our team. Participants will cover all aspects of skin cancer management from initial assessment of the patient, through biopsy techniques, non-surgical management of skin cancer, histopathological correlation, radiation therapy, and surgery.
In the long term we aim to be an independent provider of high quality, practical training in the fields of skin cancer medicine and general dermatology, to the Australian medical community.”