Austin Health/ Northern Health

Training Positions

Core Training: 2
Non-core: 0

Current Trainee/s

Dr Bonnia Liu
Dr Laura Eades
Dr Christopher McMaster (Fellow)

Patient Services per Standard Week

Average inpatients: 12 per week
Average consults: 25 per week
Clinics: 5-7 clinics per week
Specialised clinics:

  • Musculoskeletal/ MSK ultrasound
  • Autoimmune
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Axial spondyloarthritis
  • Polymyalgia rheumatica/ GCA
  • Combined Ortho/ Rheum

Requirements for On Call / Afterhours (including weekends)

Weekends/ Public Holidays

Education Activities

Educational meetings:

  • Weekly Unit Meeting
  • Journal clubs: 2-monthly
  • Radiology meetings: monthly
  • Histopathology meeting: 3-monthly
  • DOM Grand Round: annual

Teaching Responsibilities

  • Medical students: Four-week placement of UOM MD4 students (3-4 times a year)
  • Basic Trainee: desirable but not required
  • Assist with RACP Divisional Written & Clinical Examination preparation: identify suitable long- and short-cases

Research Interests of Unit

  1. Polymyalgia rheumatica: pathophysiology, epidemiology, classification criteria, novel imaging techniques
  2. Rheumatoid arthritis: serologic biomarkers, translational research, clinical trials
  3. Axial spondyloarthritis: epidemiology, prognostic studies, work disability
  4. SLE: epidemiology, clinical trials, novel outcome measures
  5. IRAEs associated with checkpoint inhibitors: pathophysiology, epidemiology, diagnosis, management
  6. Musculoskeletal ultrasound

Head of Unit

Dr Lionel Schachna (Austin Health, Acting Head)
Dr Andrew Foote (Northern Health, Head)


Austin Health

Dr Lionel Schachna
A/Prof Russell Buchanan
A/Prof Alberta Hoi
Dr Esther Yenson-Chu
Dr Simon Lam
Dr Claire Owen
Dr David Liew
Dr Jessica Leung
Dr Mueed Mian

Northern Health

Dr Andrew Foote
Dr Michelle Seah
Dr Diane Apostolopoulos
Dr Pamela Anjara
Dr David Liew
Dr Mueed Mian

Rheumatology Nurse: Natalie Deeble


We provide outstanding learning opportunities to foster the development of first-rate clinician rheumatolo-gists and offer research projects across the breadth of the rheumatic disorders. Our training program strives to uphold the Austin/ Northern tradition of excellence in patient care, teaching and research. For six months, trainees are responsible for inpatient care and ward consultations at the Austin Hospital and attend out-patient clinics. During the other six months, trainees manage ward consultations at the Northern Hospital and attend outpatient clinics at both sites.

Our trainees receive mentored personalized supervision in the evaluation and management across the full spectrum of acute and chronic rheumatologic disorders. We offer specialised clinical exposure in rheumatoid arthritis, connective tissue disorders, axial spondyloarthritis, polymyalgia rheumatica/giant cell arteritis and musculoskeletal medicine. The musculoskeletal ultrasound clinic provides a unique experience in the assessment of synovial tissue, correlation with exam findings and needle-guidance of aspiration and injection.


Training positions allocated by state selection panel.
Rheumatology Training is through the RACP Advanced Training and Selection matching process.

Flexible Training

Job sharing N
Part-time N