Intergenerational group visits at Kew Gardens Aged Care

Our intergenerational group of medical students and older doctors and other health professionals continues to flourish. Each month the group meets at Kew Gardens Aged Care and has a guest speaker or an activity, followed by a discussion.

The older doctors and health professionals enjoy the energy and enthusiasm of the students, while the younger members of the group appreciate the wisdom and experience of the older generation. Everyone has enjoyed the range of guest speakers, as evidenced by the ensuing questions and discussion which follow.

Guest speakers and activities have included:

  • Mr Chris Haw, orthopaedic surgeon, Western Health, former head of the Orthopaedic Unit at Western Health and former orthopaedic surgeon for the Footscray Football Club.
  • Dr Mukesh Haikerwal, well known GP and spokesperson and lobbyist for the medical profession in many areas.
  • Grace Fitzgerald, volunteer with the Water Well Project. The Water Well Project is a health promotion charity which aims to improve the health and wellbeing of refugees and asylum seekers by improving their health literacy.
  • Kay Dunkley, a consultant pharmacist, gave a presentation on the topic of thunderstorm asthma.
  • A/Prof Rosemary Nixon AM, occupational dermatologist and an academic and researcher, covered a range of topics including contact dermatitis, occupational dermatology, her work as a consultant for patients who live in East Timor with a variety of skin conditions.
  • A/Prof Louis Roller, 'Disease, medicines in Shakespearian plays.Louis Roller (BPharm, BSc, MSc, PhD, DipEd, FPS) is Honorary Associate Professor in Pharmacy Practice at Monash University.
  • Dr Lachlan de Crespigny, ‘Legal and ethical issues – a late abortion and its impact.’ Dr de Crespigny is an obstetrician and gynaecologist who specialised in diagnostic ultrasound and has been a clinico-legal adviser for MIPS since 2008. 
  • Dr Chris Buckley,‘Australians’ contributions to prevention and treatment of world blindness.’ Dr Buckley is an ophthalmologist with specialty interests in glaucoma diagnosis and treatment, especially surgical management; cataracts; all corneal diseases; retinal diseases; imaging and therapeutic uses of soft contact lenses. Chris’ experience in issues affecting the underdeveloped world includes work with Fred Hollows in Central Australia and Cambodia and Australian South Pacific Eye Consultant Teams in Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands.
  • Mr Will Blake, plastic and reconstructive surgeon, ‘Melanoma management in 2018.’ Mr Blake has been working exclusively in plastic surgery since 2003 and has developed his key interests in skin malignancy, breast surgery and hands from this time on. Will is also a Board Member of AMA Victoria.
  • A/Prof Eleanor Flynn, ‘Euthanasia.’ Dr Flynn is a Fellow of the Colleges of General Practice and Medical Administration and also has Bachelor of Education and Master of Theology degrees. She is currently an Associate Professor in Medical Education at the Melbourne Medical School and was until early 2017 a palliative care specialist at Royal Melbourne Hospital, working predominantly in the community.

We sincerely thank our speakers who all contribute on a voluntary basis.

The numbers of students participating each month varies between six and 12, with 20 volunteers involved across the program. The ability of students to attend is impacted by their timetables and their placements at various hospital and medical practices around Victoria. During term breaks students also have placements in remote Australia and overseas.

One of the recent highlights of the program was being able to borrow the portable laparoscopy trainers from the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons. This made for a very interactive session with students and the older doctors and health professionals pairing up to practice their techniques.

The AMA Victoria Peer Visitor Program is open to any older doctor who would like a visitor. All volunteers are members of AMA Victoria and range from medical students, doctors at varying stages of their career and retired medical professionals.

Visit the Peer Visitor Program section of our website for more information or email Kay Dunkley on [email protected]


The AMA Victoria Peer Visitor Program is proudly supported by PSA Insurance.