Our health care professionals come together to provide you with assistance in the management of your problem. Their skills are different, complimentary, and offer a variety of approaches. Each patient will be given guidance on how to utilise these skills in their own unique combination.
Dr Saul Geffen
BM,BS (Flin) FRACGP, FAFRM (RACP)
Clinical Senior Lecturer, School of Medicine, University of Queensland
Visiting Medical Officer at Mater and Canossa Private Hospitals
Director of Rehabilitation at Canossa Private Hospital
Director of Brisbane Pain Rehabilitation Service
Dr Geffen is the Director of BPRS. He works with Dr Sharma to provide medical supervision and perform any procedures that may be necessary.
Dr Tarunisha Sharma
MBBS, FAFRM (RACP)
Dr Sharma works with Dr Geffen to provide specialised rehabilitation care throughout the program. She reviews medication and performs any procedures that may be necessary. She will meet with you individually during the program and delivers a medication lecture. At the conclusion, she convenes a team meeting (case conference) to discuss your progress and to provide advice on further management.
Dr Matthew Hocking
Dr Hocking provides optional expert psychiatric care during the program as required and is available for ongoing treatment.
He has a special interest in helping patients manage drug and alcohol addiction and is available for individual consultation throughout the program.
Mr Nathan Craig
BPhty, BExSci (GU), APAM
Nathan’s main interest is in chronic pain management and believes the right education can help people to move well and safely again. He provides individual diagnosis, assessment and treatment plans throughout the program and supervises therapeutic exercise and self-management education sessions.
Miss Lucy Taylor
BPhty (Honours) (UQ)
Lucy is passionate about delivering holistic patient-centred care and establishing individualised rehabilitation. She supervises therapeutic exercise and gym sessions, working in conjunction with Nathan to provide superior treatment
Ms Lauren Sexton
Bach. Clinical Exercise Physiology, AEP, ESSAM
Accredited Exercise Physiologist
Lauren is driven by patients achieving their personal goals, returning to enjoyable activities and modifying risk of morbidity to lead a healthier and happier lifestyle.
Lauren supervises hydrotherapy and delivers an exercise lecture.
Prof Gina Geffen AM
BA Hon (Rand), PhD (Monash), DSc hon (Flin) FASSA, FAPS,
Professor Emeritus, University of Queensland
Clinical Neuropsychologist and Clinical Psychologist
Professor Geffen is a clinical psychologist and clinical neuropsychologist who supervises the psychology program aimed at providing an understanding of the nature of chronic pain and strategies for managing it.
The Brisbane Pain Rehabilitation Service is recognised by the University of Queensland, Griffith University, Queensland University of Technology, Australian Catholic University, and the University of Southern Queensland for training postgraduate clinical psychologists, neuropsychologists and health and sports psychologists.
These provisional psychologists provide individual and small group therapy under her supervision.
Dr Heidi Saunders
BPsych(Honours), DPsych (Clinical), MAPS
Heidi has completed her Doctor of Clinical Psychology while working within the psychology component of the program. She facilitates various psychology group sessions throughout the program and is available for individualised therapy sessions, upon request.
Heidi has an interest in getting to know clients’ personal journeys of self-managing chronic pain. She is passionate about seeing the development of their psychological skills to assist with this journey. Heidi has experience and an interest working in the areas of anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress, self-esteem and management of chronic health conditions, all of which can be associated with the experience of chronic pain.
Our occupational therapist presents the sections of the program covering activities of daily living, return to work, and daily exercise. On request, she can also provide assessment of your ability to return to the workforce, if necessary, in an altered capacity.
Ms Tarni Sanewski
Accredited Practising Dietitian
Tarni is an Accredited Practising Dietitian who is passionate about improving health, promoting recovery and preventing disease by inspiring healthy diet and lifestyle choices using a patient-centred approach. Graduating from the University of the Sunshine Coast with a Bachelor of Nutrition & Dietetics, Tarni has since had clinical experience working with acute cardiac and respiratory patients in hospital. Special interest areas include rehabilitation, weight management, cardiovascular disease, gut health and sports nutrition.
Outside of work, Tarni enjoys hiking, climbing mountains, exploring new places, drawing and photography. She is always experimenting with new foods, recipes and keeping up to date with the latest research in nutrition and dietetics.
Mrs Alison Sykes
Registered Yoga Teacher
Alison has a special interest in the adaptation of yoga practices to meet the needs of the individual. She enjoys working in the multi-disciplinary approach of the program to support and complement other modalities. She offers one session in the program focusing on gentle movement within each participant’s comfortable range of motion, as well as guided breathing and relaxation techniques.