Dr Ruwani Mendis
Medical Oncologist/Palliative Medicine Physician
Personal Profile: 

I am a consultant palliative care physician and a medical oncologist. As a palliative care physician I have expertise in managing cancer related symptoms including pain and nausea and other aspects of supportive and palliative care. As a medical oncologist I have expertise in managing breast cancer. 

My basic medical degree is from the University of Adelaide in South Australia. After undertaking physician and specialist training through tertiary centers in Melbourne, I completed an overseas fellowship in clinical oncology in British Colombia, Canada. At present, I hold a sessional appointment in cancer services at Western Health and an honorary appointment at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre. 

In addition, I am a palliative care physician with Banksia Palliative Care, the community palliative care provider to the North Eastern suburbs of Melbourne. In this capacity, I work with a team of specialist nurses and allied health workers and collaborate closely with primary care providers in the region to support palliative care patients in their homes. 

I am engaged in palliative care research and am the palliative care research lead for Western Health and the principal investigator in a number of palliative care trials. I also teach medical students at the Western Health Clinical School. 

Being a specialist in both cancer and palliative care, I have a unique understanding of the issues impacting cancer patients from early on to later in their diagnosis and am passionate about the early involvement of good palliative care to optimize quality of life at all stages. 

Outside of work I have a young family with a husband and three primary school aged children who keep me busy.