Meet The Specialists

At some stage in our lives we are going to need a medical specialist and we need to know we are in the best capable care possible. In this feature we are going to introduce you to the Specialists that have the experience and the expertise in their chosen fields. These are the people who dedicate their lives to making your life better. Whether it be surgery or birthing, cardio or dental Cairns has the best available to help you feel safe and secure. Once we needed to travel down south for top specialist care but not anymore. You may well have been treated by these specialists or you may not have had a need for them but we are showcasing the best so you are well informed.

Caring nature goes above and beyond

Dr David Shepherd

“I don’t relax until the job is done, and my patients are feeling good again.”

Words by Janie Barton

He’s one of the top orthopaedic specialists in Cairns and in huge demand with patients suffering from a range of orthopaedic problems. And while he successfully operates on hundreds of patients, Dr David Shepherd continues his interest in his patients’ wellbeing long after their operations.

Dr Shepherd, who was born in Mareeba and grew up in Cairns, has more than 24 years of experience in the field, after attaining his medical degree at the University of Queensland before completing his Advanced Training in Orthopaedics. He is also accredited to the highest standard in Australia.

He opened his Cairns practice in 1997, providing general orthopaedic consultancy with an interest in arthroscopy of the shoulder and knee, particularly rotator cuff syndrome, shoulder instability and ACL repair.

His experience at total joint replacement of hips, knees and shoulders provides his patients with a comprehensive lifetime care with low complication rates.

“When I did my training, I trained across all areas of orthopaedics,” he said. “As a result, I see my patient as a whole, not just the part they have injured. I have operated on just about every bone in the body although I’m more specialised now, focussing on knees, hips and shoulders.”

He finds it very rewarding helping patients get back on their feet and enjoying their lives again.

“It’s important to me that I get my patients mobile again, get them out of their homes and back in the community,” he said. “To me, it’s more than doing the surgery successfully. It’s also a matter of helping them find the right rehab program and helping them get through that so they can get back to living their lives in comfort.

“I don’t relax until the job is done, and my patients are feeling good again. My job ends once they are back on their feet.”

His caring nature is also evident in his devotion to the Cairns to Karumba Bike. Ride, which raises money to provide opportunities for children in remote areas across the Cape. He has been involved in the event from 2010 up to 2018 where he has been on the committee, mapped out the tracks and participated in the mountain bike ride. He has taken a step back this year after a bicycle accident where he suffered broken ribs.

As well as being devoted to his profession, Dr Shepherd is also devoted to his wife Cathy and their dog, and he loves the lifestyle here.

“Cairns has been my life-long home, but it’s such a great place to live,” he said. “It’s such a nice, clean city with great facilities and friendly people.”

Dr David Shepherd
5 Upward Street (Flecker House)
Ph: 4031 8400

Boost for Women’s Health

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“Dr Green will be the first regular visiting gynaecological oncologist to Cairns, so this means that women with cancer of the reproductive tract can have either some or all of their care provided locally.”

Giving local women access to the same gynaecological services as women in major cities has inspired four highly-skilled gynaecologists and a gynaecologist registrar to group together to help women in Cairns who might otherwise have to travel away for care and treatment.

Initiated by Cairns’ obstetrician and gynaecologist Dr Elizabeth Jackson and called Birds of Paradise, the five women are determined to make life easier for women needing specialised help.

The group includes Dr Jackson, Dr Anusha Lazzari and Dr Emma Green from Cairns along with visiting subspecialists Dr Kurinji Kannan and Dr Helen Green.

Dr Jackson, who has had her own practice for three years, has specialist skills in fertility medicine, operative gynaecology and has completed Masters Degrees in both of these fields. She also continues to offer exceptional maternity services.

Dr Anusha Lazzari

Dr Anusha Lazzari, an obstetrician and gynaecologist who works at Dr Jackson’s practice, specialises in pregnancy care, pelvic pain disorders, aspects of medical care relating to menopause and has simulation-based training in the context of Obstetric crisis and emergency situations.
She has just returned from having her own baby and is now providing shared obstetric care with Dr Jackson for pregnant women.

Dr Emma Green

Dr Emma Green, who also works at Dr Jackson’s practice, is completing her fifth year as a gynaecologist training with the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists and worked as a registrar at the Townsville Hospital, Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital and the Cairns Hospital.

Dr Kannan

Visiting expert surgeon Dr Kannan is a fellow of the Royal Australian College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologist and is also a sub-specialist in urogynecology.

“We’ve been very lucky to have Dr Kannan coming here regularly for the past couple of years,” Dr Jackson said. Dr Kannan performs urodynamic studies, as well as conservative and surgical treatments for urinary incontinence and prolapse.

Dr Helen Green is a gynaecological oncologist specialising in the diagnosis and treatment of women with cancerous or precancerous gynaecological conditions.

“Dr Green will be the first regular visiting gynaecological oncologist to Cairns, so this means that women with cancer of the reproductive tract can have either some or all of their care provided locally,” Dr Jackson said. “Usually women have to leave town to have surgery performed by a gynaecological oncologist, which means they are away from their family, friends and support network, which is why we’re bringing all these very high-level experts to Cairns.”

Dr Jackson, Dr Lazzari and Dr Emma Green provide facilities for patients to telehealth to Townsville or the Gold Coast with the sub-specialists as well as offering surgical-assisting services and post and pre-operative care.

“There are many women every week from Cairns who have to fly out of the city to have complex surgery or to have surgical treatment for gynaecological cancers,” Dr Jackson said. “There’s some very complex gynaecological cancers that may require them to still leave Cairns, but at the very least they can receive their pre-operative and post-operative care here, which takes the pressure of flying out of town every few weeks.”

Dr Elizabeth has recently performed the first ever robotic hysterectomy in Cairns. She gained her Masters in minimum invasive surgery at the University of Adelaide and completed a dedicated robotic training course. This included simulator activities, which required the specialist achieve a 90 percent average.

She said patients having a robotic hysterectomy have a hospital stay on average for one night and recovery time was reduced from six weeks with open surgery to just two weeks through robotic surgery.

“I’m committed to having access to the surgical gynaecologist options for women here as they are in big cities and this includes access to the latest technology,” Dr Jackson said.

“With Dr Helen Green and Dr Kurinji Kannan now regularly visiting Cairns, women now have access to expert surgeons and gynaecological services locally rather than having to leave town. I think the world is a very small place and just because we’re in Cairns doesn’t mean we shouldn’t get access to sub-specialists and advanced surgical options.”

With Dr Lazzari, Dr Jackson’s practice continues to provide expert care in obstetrics, gynaecology and fertility. Antenatal and obstetric services include care for general and high-risk pregnancies, recurrent miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy and antenatal ultrasound.

Gynaecology services include extensive expertise in the areas of general and surgical gynaecology such as hysteroscopy, laparoscopy and robotic surgery. The practice specialises in the management of menstrual problems, endometriosis, fibroids, hysterectomy, ablation, ovarian and dermoid cysts, pelvic pain and colposcopy.
Fertility treatment and support is offered by her team of doctors and consists of general fertility advice and check-ups, IVF and assisted reproductive technologies and evidence-based natural fertility treatment.

“It is a privilege to work with women in all phases of life,” Dr Jackson said. “With the Birds of Paradise clinics, our collective skills provide complete care across the spectrum of women’s health in fertility, obstetrics and gynaecology.”

For details on all the specialists and what is now available in Cairns, visit

Dr Elizabeth Jackson
Level 1, 189 Abbott St
Wallamurra Towers
Ph: 4041 5081

Words by Janie Barton | Photos by Blueclick Photography

Expanded services benefit patients

Dr Suki Ahluwalia

“What I love most is helping patients through their time of need and getting them back to their normal lives.”

He’s already one of the most experienced Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) specialists in Cairns, and now Dr Suki Ahluwalia of Coral Sea ENT has raised the bar even further with the addition of two highly experienced audiological scientists.

“Jason Le Dilly and Matthew Le Dilly from Hello Hearing, who are both very experienced and knowledgeable, will provide me with accurate hearing tests for adults and children prior to and after any surgery,” said Dr Suki, who opened his practice two years ago. “They will also screen adults for hearing loss, identify patients suitable for the new ranges of surgically implantable hearing aids, provide hearing aid services and will also see tinnitus patients.”

Coral Sea ENT deals with the comprehensive range of ENT problems, including sinus surgery, nasal breathing issues, ear health, hearing problems, tumours and growths around the head and neck, thyroid problems and “our delightful paediatric population”.

Dr Suki, who studied and trained under some of the world’s top specialists, has over 15 years of international specialist ENT, otorhinolaryngology experience and is dual Fellowship qualified with both The Royal Australasian College of Surgeons and The Royal College of Surgeons of England.
He is also passionate about helping manage and treat hearing problems for indigenous children, which is why he has been working with Check Up and the Commonwealth to provide hearing restoration surgery to children in FNQ.

“We have days where we suspend our normal private practice and invite as many indigenous children to the clinic as can come so we screen their ears and hearing and then operate on them either the next day or the next week, all at no cost to the patients,” Dr Suki said. “The rate of indigenous ear health problems is one of the highest in the world, and this is our way of helping to tackle the problem.”

Having trained in London, where he was awarded a place on the UK’s foremost highly competitive specialist training program in otolaryngology, head and neck surgery, he came to Australia in 2012 and moved to Cairns in 2014.

“I love Cairns and being out on the water enjoying this beautiful corner of the world,” said Dr Suki, who loves scuba diving, underwater photography and playing his guitar when he’s not working. “What I love most is helping patients through their time of need and getting them back to their normal lives.”

Coral Sea ENT
Suite 2, 193 Lake St, Cairns
Ph: 4232 4911

Words by Janie Barton | Photo by Catherine Coombs

Specialists within their speciality

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“We are excited to move together into this next phase, offering the full spectrum of best-practice sub-specialty cardiology services in Cairns.”

Expert specialists within their field of speciality are at the heartbeat of Heart Rx Cardiology, a private cardiology practice started by Dr Tim Carruthers, the first Cardiologist to arrive in Cairns over 30 years ago. Dr Carruthers is looking towards retirement and will soon be handing over the business to his trusted colleagues. He will continue to see his patients and, together with his team of sub-specialists, will continue the high standard of care and commitment that his patients have come to love and trust.

“We are excited to move together into this next phase, offering the full spectrum of best-practice sub-specialty cardiology services in Cairns, with our specialists Dr Sam Hillier, Imaging Cardiologist; Dr Ram Saireddy, Interventional Cardiologist; Dr Ben Reeves, Paediatric Cardiologist and Dr Kieran Dauber, Electrophysiologist Cardiologist,” Dr Carruthers said.

Heart Rx will continue to cover all areas of Cardiology, including Bulk Bill Holter and Echocardiography services to Cairns and surrounding areas.

Dr Sam Hillier is an Imaging Cardiologist with special interests in the management of acute and chronic heart failure as well as the performance of stress and transoesophageal echocardiography and cardiac CT.

Dr Sam Hillier, an Imaging Cardiologist who has been with Heart Rx for five years, was inspired to enter medicine after seeing the assistance his father received when he had a cardiac problem as well as his love of science and his enjoyment of meeting people.

“I enjoy solving the problem with the information that imaging cardiologists use, whether that is echocardiography (ultrasound of the heart) and its sub-specialties or CT scans of the heart,” he said.

“I enjoy working as a specialist and the professional relationship that develops with patients over the years,” he said. “Treating heart failure is particularly rewarding, as patients often leave the hospital feeling markedly better than they had felt in ages.’

Dr Ram Saireddy is an Interventional Cardiologist with his main interest in management of coronary artery disease and additional interest in structural heart disease management. Dr Saireddy is very experienced in performing coronary procedures such as angiography and angioplasty.

Dr Ram Saireddy, an Interventional Cardiologist who has been with Heart Rx for three years, was motivated to study medicine by seeing the effect his family doctor had on his patients.

“Our family physician was knowledgeable, always empathetic with patients, reassuring, reliable and trustworthy,” he said. “He inspired me to become a doctor.”

His decision to become an interventional cardiologist was to help people lead full lives again.

“Intervention in cardiology is a science and an art,” he said. “Procedures such as stenting have to be well planned and perfectly executed. It is one of the few specialities where one can make a difference to a person’s life in a few minutes, which attracted me to interventional cardiology. Seeing a patient who presented critically ill and then later walking home happily with their family is one of the most rewarding aspects of my work.”

Dr Ben Reeves is a Paediatric Cardiologist with a primary interest in echocardiography for congenital and rheumatic heart disease. He offers diagnostic echo and clinical assessment of patients from the newborn period to adolescence.

Dr Ben Reeves, a Paediatric Cardiologist was inspired to become a Doctor by his Grandfather, who was a GP, and by his own interest in helping people.

His desire to help young heart patients came about when he worked as a paediatrician in Fiji where he saw a lot of babies and young children with heart problems.

“I started learning more about hearts in Fiji, and when I returned to Australia I started my paediatric cardiology training,” said Dr Reeves, who has been with Heart Rx for five years.

“I love seeing my patients and their families as they grow up. Unfortunately, some of the patients I see for the first time are babies with heart problems from birth, but to help them and their families through that difficult time, see them recovering after surgery and then grow up, go to school and do normal kid stuff is very satisfying.

“I also love travelling to do clinics in the Cape, Torres Straits and Yarrabah, and making sure those children have access to specialist care.”

Dr Kieran Dauber is an Electrophysiologist Cardiologist with expertise in the ablation of cardiac arrhythmias, device management of brady and tachyarrhythmias, including implantation of pacemakers, implantable cardiac defibrillators and cardiac resynchronisation therapy.

Dr Kieran Dauber, an Electrophysiologist Cardiologist who has been with Heart Rx for nearly three years, always found medicine fascinating, which inspired him to become a Doctor and then a Cardiologist.

“Cardiology is the best area of medicine,” said Dr Dauber, who worked under the supervision of world experts in the field of Cardiac Electrophysiology, with a focus on ablation of cardiac arrhythmias including Atrial Fibrillation and Ventricular Tachycardia when he undertook a Fellowship at Loyal University Medical Centre in Chicago, USA.

“It’s nice to be able to do something really beneficial for someone. There is always a lot of new research being done in cardiology, so it’s a dynamic field to work in.”

Heart Rx Cardiology
12 Grove Street, Cairns North
Ph: 4031 2188

Words by Janie Barton | Photos by Catherine Coombs

The Industry Estate Agents

Megs Walker Lead Agent | Director

“team work makes the dream work”

The Industry Estate Agents excel in providing the utmost in real estate service solutions.

The industry experts attend to all types of real estate clients, including new home owners looking for their dream home, investors, clients requiring special attention, and clients with unique circumstances.

The Industry opened in January this year and is a boutique real estate and commercial agency located in the heart of Stratford.

Their aim is to be the best real estate agency, and provide the highest level of customer service to their clients while achieving premium results and maintaining upmarket branding – all at an affordable price.

In order to achieve this goal, the team must constantly improve their response to clients’ ever-changing needs and create an exceptional buying, selling and rental experience that goes beyond their clients’ expectations.

The Industry Estate Agents has been able to assist clients in every market environment and exceed their expectations.

Their boutique office located in Stratford serves the Cairns and northern beaches market and thrives on sharing industry insight, customer service, an incredible database and their passion for life, community and relationships.

The Industry Estate Agents is owned by leading agent/director Megs Walker, an experienced award-winning agent, with numerous written testimonials from her many satisfied clients.

Megs’ dedication and commitment to providing incomparable service has achieved ongoing success across changing property markets and has earned her an unrivalled reputation for outstanding results.

Outstanding customer service, impeccable presentation and a tenacious work ethic are hallmarks of her selling philosophy.

Megs’ main objective is achieving premium results for her clients and this is underpinned by having a close, loyal relationship with them.

Her natural ability to build rapport with clients comes from her openness and sincerity – traits that enable her to build strong relationships based on authenticity, respect and honesty.

Megs began her career in 2012 at House Estate Agents in Toowoomba.

She loves helping clients find their dream homes and the challenge of a career in real estate.

“Real estate tests you as a person, and leads to huge growth on a personal level,” she said.

Megs attributes part of her success to the outstanding team of 12 she works with.

“You are who you surround yourself by,” she said. “I have an amazing team who work well together.

“We share the same vision and our goals are aligned.”

The Industry Estate Agents offer membership to an exclusive VIP Buyers Club, allowing them to offer the next level of service to their clients.

They also invest heavily in marketing properties, especially online, which enables them to advertise to as many clients as possible.

11 Johnston Street, Stratford QLD 4870
Ph: 07 4055 1551
M: 0437 536 715

Words by Stacey Carrick


Long-standing trusted expertise

Dr Bob Gibbins

“It’s very rewarding for me to help make a difference to the lives and health of my patients.”

Thanks to Dr Bob Gibbons’ thirst for knowledge, Cairns’ residents have one of the country’s most specialised general dentists who is constantly at the forefront of his industry.

Dr Gibbins graduated with Honours in 1972 from The University of Queensland and spent four years as a Military dentist, practicing all over the East coast of Australia and PNG before opening Future Dental in 1976.

He has been a leader in the field of cosmetic and reconstructive dentistry, sleep apnoea and tongue-tie and lip-tie releases for years. His practice also concentrates on family and preventative dentistry.

He was on the ground floor of the cosmetic dentistry industry in its early days in the 1970s and constantly keeps abreast of the most up-to-date technology and equipment, making him a trusted expert in the industry. He also has vast experience in porcelain veneer technology and has placed around 14,000 veneers.

Thanks to the latest E4D technology, Future Dental provides same-day crowns, veneers and bridges, a service its patients greatly appreciate.

“We design and build the crowns on the same day, so patients don’t have to have a temporary crown for a couple of weeks while their new crown is being made in an external laboratory,’ Dr Gibbins said. “Building the crowns here also gives us a lot more control in getting a precision crown.”
He is also the only dentist in Cairns with expertise and long experience in the treatment of tongue-tie and lip-tie in infants, children and adults.

Tongue-tie is a condition in which the thin piece of skin under the tongue is abnormally short and may restrict the movement of the tongue. Lip-tie describes a membrane that restricts the normal movements of the top lip.

“Tongue-tie and lip-tie cause feeding problems for babies, which can have a big impact on their airway development, so they can end up struggling with sleep apnoea, malocclusions needing orthodontics and speech problems,” said Dr Gibbins, who has received international training in this field through three world-class institutes – the World Clinic Laser Institute, the Tongue-tie Institute and the Excellence in Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopaedics. Another area of his special interest is the treatment of headaches, migraine and TMJ pain.

Dr Gibbins’ focus has always been on improving the lives of his patients through his constant studying and learning.

“I think it’s really important to keep up to date with the latest information and technology,” said the father of five and grandfather of three. “It’s very rewarding for me to help make a difference to the lives and health of my patients.”

Future Dental
93-95 McLeod Street, Cairns
Ph: 4051 4580

Words by Janie Barton | Photo by Catherine Coombs

Growing, always improving

Totally Workwear

Totally Workwear

“I see Cairns entering a whole new era, one that reminds me of the late 1980s when all Cairns’ businesses were booming.”

From small beginnings with just the two owners working in a small 100sqm metre shop to now having 27 other staff members in a 1495sq m facility, Chris and June Kingsbury were visionaries before their time when they took over a fledging Totally Workwear in Cairns in 1995. And they haven’t stopped leading the way since.

“Back then the word ‘workwear’ was scarcely known,” said Chris. “It was a new industry on the horizon as very few people had the idea that workwear and workplace safety would become as important as they are today.”

Starting with very basic work clothing and personal protective equipment (PPE) as one of just four Totally Workwear franchises in Australia, Chris and June grew the company so much that it’s now the second longest-running TWW franchise in Australia out of 74 Totally Workwear stores, and the only one that has been in a single ownership since inception.

“We’re the grandads of the franchise,” Chris joked. “We grew from a mum-and-dad enterprise to a fully-fledged corporate business that is broken into various divisions including business casuals and corporate workwear, industrial clothing, footwear and safety equipment.”

They expanded their shop to include a safety showroom featuring a diverse range of PPE equipment such as hard hats, safety eyewear, first-aid, hand-protection and environmental spill kits (for chemical and oil leaks), safety vests earplugs, respirators and UV sun-protection items, to name just some of the items in stock. The shop also supplies more than 200 styles of safety footwear and is one of the largest safety footwear suppliers in Australia.

Along with King Gee, Yakka and Bisley work shirts, its apparel range includes everything from working singlets and polo shirts, corporate clothing and garments suited for the hospitality industry, such as chef’s caps, aprons, pants and shirts.
Always keeping abreast of local needs and demand, Chris and June have also incorporated an in-house printer to supply custom-made safety signs and stickers to comply with all of Queensland’s Health and Safety requirements.

They’ve also recently added an in-house embroidery section with two embroidery machines, saving customers time adding corporate logos or insignias to their work wear.

With a strong focus on health and safety, Chris and June are adding a new state-of-the-art PortaCount Respirator equipment-testing room in January with a Fit Tester to enable the testing of customers’ equipment to protect themselves from airborne workplace dangers. These include asbestos and silica, minerals that are part of sand, rock and mineral ores such as quartz that can cause lung disease.

“The PortaCount will be the first in Far North Queensland and will be a hugely useful service to our customer base,” Chris said. “Councils and companies have a legal responsibility to ensure the health of their employees, so this will be a huge benefit to them and their workers, especially where cutting, sawing and sanding these materials generate these dusts.”

Another way Chris and June have differentiated themselves from their competition is by encouraging and supporting their staff and ensuring they are knowledgeable and regularly trained in the technical aspects of the national brands they stock, so customers know they can trust and rely on the products they are purchasing.

“Excellent customer service and product knowledge from all of our staff is very important to us,” Chris said. “A work shirt is not just a work shirt. If you’re a welder, you need a different work shirt than an electrician or a bricklayer, for example. We make sure all our staff know everything about the products they sell to ensure our customers’ safety and comfort.”
While Chris and June are still involved in the running and future growth of the business, they are now looking to pass over the reins to a new owner in Cairns who will keep the business in the “Cairns family”.

“We’re looking to retire soon,” Chris said. “I see Cairns entering a whole new era, one that reminds me of the late 1980s when all Cairns’ businesses were booming, so we feel really good about putting the business on the market now and handing the shop over at a very fortuitous time for new owners.”

Totally Workwear
98 Scott Street
Ph: 4047 4444

Words by Janie Barton | Photo by Catherine Coombs



It is possible to Age Amazingly with Medical Advancement in the area of tissue Regeneration.

Imagine your Youthful Ageing Future! We have all your long-term regenerative solutions that can have you growing younger as time advances.

Ageing is now a choice!

The world of injectables and fillers is vast – some are labelled neuromodulators (Anti-wrinkle), some are hyaluronic fillers, which create an instant result. Fewer people know of newer combination therapies used in advanced clinics that create more natural longer-term results and even grow collagen and elastin ageing you backwards. These collagen-stimulating treatments replace your lost volume while growing your own new elastin and collagen.

As a Key Opinion Leader, of national and international World Symposiums, having presented on stage to audiences of her medical peers in the field of Regenerative Medicine Nicole Jackson-Belle, Founder and CEO of Face Today Medi-Clinic has a wealth of knowledge and training that she not only has passed on to her patients but to her incredible team of Clinical Nurse Practitioners. It is this knowledge that gives her the confidence to voice in the vast world of Anti-Ageing possibilities and her message is simple, “The Future of Anti-Ageing is in Regenerative Medicine”.

Maintaining volume and our natural youthful glow is now in the advanced areas of ‘Regeneration’ whereas in the past the only option for youthful contours was filling. Filling is effective, however it is a short-term solution only, as your body metabolises the filler the moment it goes in. It will metabolize over a 6 to 9 to 12 month period depending on the product choice.

Rather than instantly filling or smoothing lines like their counterparts, collagen- stimulating treatments are long lasting and add volume that actually lifts the soft tissues, ultimately tightening the skin, restoring lost shape, volume and diminishing lines.

Face Today also consults on the inside outside approach of supplementation to feed your cells with nutrients. The most important of these supplements being Protein, which, is essential in forming elastin and collagen to enhance and accelerate recovery and regeneration.

High quality, nutrient dense Protein is required for the growth and maintenance of cells and tissues, allowing them to maintain stiffness and rigidity stabilizing your overall facial structure. These tissues include Collagen and Elastin, collagen that is a structural component of your ligaments and skin and elastin that is several hundred times more flexible than collagen. Its high elasticity allows many tissues in your body to return to their original shape after stretching such as skin.

Now that you’ve got the basic idea of how regenerative treatments work, it’s time for the WOW moment! The results of these treatments can last for years and future treatments keep pace with your natural aging!

Gentle, subtle, lifting, tightening, restoring, shaping and glowing skin, who could imagine that you had anything done! People will notice that you are looking radiant and youthful but may not guess that you have been doing anything other than living a healthy lifestyle to achieve these results.

Face TodaySuite 2, 439 Draper St, Cairns
1800 322 386

Recycling for our future generations

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“Being able to reuse and recycle is the most basic thing that we can do to help Mother Nature.”

As a dedicated Cairns recycling centre for 26 years, North Queensland Recycling Agents (NQRA) has recently expanded its services, facility and staff to help locals capitalise on the Queensland Government’s new Container Refund Scheme.

The family owned business has acquired a new shed and employed 10 additional locals to help Cairns residents and businesses support and benefit from the new scheme, which offers a 10-cent refund on each eligible container returned.

“On our first day of operating the buy-back scheme the Cairns’ community cashed in 45,000 items,” said NQRA owner Ian Kermode, who says the program is an important innovation in recycling. “This buy-back scheme is a must. We are such a wasteful society, and we just can’t keep wasting things.

“To recycle aluminium requires only five percent of the energy that is required to turn bauxite into aluminium. We can’t just keep digging holes in the ground.”

NQRA has an all-weather refund facility at 152 Newell St where customers can drive through and staff are on hand to take the containers, count them and then pay the customers cash for the eligible items.

While most aluminium, glass, steel, plastic and liquid paperboard containers between 150ml and 3 litres are eligible, there are some exceptions, such as wine and straight spirit glass bottles and plain milk containers.

“We also lend wool bales and crates to our regular customers and residents of the Northern Beaches, so they have facilities at their homes and businesses to collect their items,” Ian said. “We can also provide stands to assist people to carry the bales.”

The container Refund Centre is open Monday to Friday from 6.30am to 5pm, Saturday 6.30am to 2pm and Sunday from 9am to 2pm.
Along with the container exchange program, NQRA offers a number of different services to local businesses in Cairns and the surrounding suburbs in an effort to greatly reduce the amount of waste ending up in landfill that could quite easily be recycled and used again in some way.

The team at the scrap-recycling depot on Federation Street can purchase non-ferrous scrap metal including copper, brass, aluminium, stainless steels, radiators and batteries at a per kilo rate from businesses and the general public and is open Monday to Thursday from 6.30am to 5pm, Friday from 6.30am to 3pm and Saturday from 6.30am to noon (closed on Sunday). On average, 64 tonne of scrap metal and 55 tonne of batteries is sent to Liberty Recycling Queensland each month.

NQRA have a cardboard recycling service and process around 700 tonne of cardboard each month from supermarkets, small businesses, shops and restaurants. They have a selection of cages available for commercial cardboard removal, from 1.1 cubic metre bins to 10 cubic metre cages and are collected upon request or serviced on a regular basis.

They have the ability to collect confidential documents and hard drives for destruction. A 240-litre wheelie bin can be delivered, and locks supplied if required. These bins are collected twice a week in a locked vehicle, brought back to NQRA’s premises where the bins are weighed and then the contents shredded. Confidentiality is maintained at all times and a Certificate of Destruction is issued.

An office recycled paper collection service is also available. A 240-litre wheelie bin can be delivered for non-confidential office paper, cardboard, magazines, manila folders and white paper. These collections are done on a weekly basis.

NQRA also accepts deliveries from the public of cardboard, plastic, glass and recyclable paper to its depot at no charge.

These services are available for businesses from the Northern Beaches, through Cairns to Edmonton.

“Being environmentally-friendly is very important these days,” Ian said. “We aim to be a recycling centre where people can bring in almost anything, and we’ll be able to recycle it one way or another.”

For more information visit NQRA’s Facebook page at

North Queensland Recycling Agents
27 Federation St, Bungalow
Refund depot: 152 Newell St, Bungalow
Ph: 4051 6679

Words by Janie Barton
Photos by Catherine Coombs

Cairns Periodontics
Saving your teeth before it is too late

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“It is so moving when a patient is brought to tears because we have
been able to save their teeth – there is no greater feeling.”

Dr Brian James, a born and bred Queenslander and one of Australia’s most accomplished Dental Specialists, since establishing Cairns Periodontics, has been helping thousands of locals save their teeth after he opened his practice in 2005. He was also involved in establishing the Dental School at JCU.

After graduating from the University of Queensland in 1987, he served three years in the Royal Australian Air Force as a Dental Officer before attaining his Fellowship of the Royal Australian College of Dental Surgeons in 1991.

Dr James was the pioneering Specialist Periodontist in Australia to introduce Regenerative Laser Therapy- Periolase. This is a minimally-invasive surgical method of treating and often reversing gum disease while encouraging bone regeneration around loosened teeth caused by the disease.

“It is so rewarding to assist a patient who feels they have lost hope of saving their teeth, to then turn them around with periodontal treatment and give them a great future of being able to chew and function normally, it is absolutely fantastic,” said Dr James, who is a leading authority on Periodontics and Implant Surgery.

“Our first endeavour is always to help our patients retain their natural teeth and if they are unable to due to the tooth/teeth being unviable, the next best option is to place dental implants.”

Dr James is one of the original leading Implantologists in Cairns and has placed approximately 2000 implants over the past 21 years.
In 2015, Cairns Periodontics was very fortunate to secure to the practice, Specialist Endodontist Dr Behrooz ‘Ben’ Eftekhar, who has had over 20 years of specialist experience. Dr Ben, as he is affectionately known to both his colleagues and his patients alike, was very quickly embraced by the Cairns locals as a caring, thoroughly approachable and gifted specialist.

With over 8,000 root Canals under his belt, Dr Ben has been instrumental in assisting patients to retain their teeth. In addition to his unlimited experience, he has the added advantage of having access to the practice’s highly specialised equipment, tools and materials. This allows for a higher success rate and the ability to manage more complex cases.

He graduated in Iran in 1994 as the highest graduating student of that year. He completed his Specialist Degree in Endodontics training in 1997, ranking No. 3 on the National Board Exam. He went on to become the Lecturer and Assistant Professor of Endodontics in Iran whilst establishing his own private practice, which he ran for 15 years before migrating to Australia and joining the Cairns Periodontics team.

“Ben is such a delight to everyone around him,” said Dr James. “His manner, thoroughness and ability to automatically put everyone at ease are a real gift.”

Check out a few of the many cases on Cairns Periodontics’ Facebook Page where there is loads of information on the services the practice provides or on its website

Cairns Periodontics
Upstairs, Trinity Hyundai Building.
455 Mulgrave Rd, Earlville 4870
Ph: 4054 4488

Photos by Catherine Coombs

Many reasons to smile

Dr Rhonda Coyne

“Having a great smile can significantly impact a person and can even be life changing.”

As a passionate advocate for the use of digital technology within the orthodontic industry, Dr Rhonda Coyne’s active engagement in the development of orthodontics is revolutionary and greatly benefits her patients with an enhanced level of treatment, greater accessibility, efficiency in service delivery and financial ability.

“I love looking at ways to stay on the cutting edge of technology to deliver better outcomes for our patients,” said Dr Coyne, who joined her father Dr Laurie Coyne’s practice in the late 1990s and who now oversees the practice’s three branches, in Cairns, Innisfail and Atherton. “I guess you could say I’m a bit of a gadget fan as I like to be across all new technologies in our industry”.

She is a huge fan of aligners, commonly referred to as ‘invisible braces’; iTero 3D digital scanning software and the Dental Monitoring phone app that enhances patient engagement and virtually monitors their treatment and progression.

“Aligners (custom-made appliances that clip over the teeth), 3D digital scanning and Dental Monitoring have made fundamental developments in the industry, and thanks to these technologies, patients can be monitored and kept on track via Dental Monitoring, and can therefore avoid some in-office appointments,” she said. “It is very exciting to embrace these new technological advances for our patients.”

Dr Coyne’s enthusiasm for innovation and technology has made her a highly-regarded and sought-after advisor, attending conferences as a speaker on the use of orthodontic digital technologies at both, a national and international level. She has addressed major conferences in Melbourne, Sydney, Perth, New Zealand, China and the USA, with many more conferences to attend in the near future.

But it is her patients who gain the most from her passion.

“A great smile makes a tremendous difference in people’s lives,” said Dr Coyne, who grew up in Far North Queensland. “It can be really life changing for the patient. Not only does it improve their appearance, it also gives them so much more confidence.”

Outside of her profession, Dr Coyne loves spending time with her partner, Craig, who is also the practice’s Business Operations Manager, and their son Harrison. They have both been involved in coaching touch football and engage in various community service opportunities.

The entire team at NQ Ortho are committed to recreating straight teeth, a healthy bite and a great smile for all their patients, which is why they also offer a free initial consultation and interest-free financing options to suit most budgets.

“I believe that everyone should have access to an assessment by a specialist orthodontist, without cost being a barrier,” said Dr Coyle. “With each smile we create, we are inspired and committed to making the world a better place. Making the world a better place around me is what really inspires me.”

nq ortho
445 Draper Street, Cairns
Ph: 4051 2333

Expertise at its best

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His devotion to the medical industry and his knowledge is invaluable.

Cairns is blessed with natural beauty that is world renown. It’s also lucky to be home to internationally acclaimed surgeon Dr Harish Kumar.

Dr Kumar’s credentials are unsurpassed. Not only does he provide expert bariatric, general, laparoscopic and upper GI surgery, his devotion to the medical industry and his knowledge is invaluable.

He trained in the UK with leading internationally renowned surgeons in advanced minimally invasive (keyhole) and cancer surgery and has published his molecular research in cancer development in highly reputed international journals.

He has been a Consultant Specialist Surgeon for over 12 years, both in the UK and here in Queensland, and was the Director of Surgery at Darling Downs Hospital before moving to Cairns to join Cairns Private Hospital. In 2016 he set up his own practice, HK Surgical, with the help of his Practice Manager Brittany Northam who oversees all aspects of the practice including patient management and surgery bookings. He will be joining the Cairns Hospital in the new year.

Dr Kumar’s surgical knowledge is vast and includes general and endocrine surgery. He has special interest in keyhole surgery for gallstone disease involving bile duct stones, splenectomy and hiatus hernia. He also performs laparoscopic surgery for cancer of the stomach, oesophagus and large bowel.

He also led a very large and busy Bariatric Surgical Unit in the UK for nearly 10 years where he performed all procedures to help patients lose weight including laparoscopic bypass and sleeve gastrectomy. He also has extensive experience on revision surgery from failed bands, sleeves and other gastroplasty.

His personal one-on-one care with each patient ensures they are well taken care of and are given the best individual treatment. His practice also works closely with a nutritionist and psychiatrist.

“I find it very rewarding helping people,” he said. “It’s wonderful to be able to help them to be healthy again.”

His passion for helping people came at a very early age.

“I knew when I was in high school that I would not only be a doctor but be a surgeon as well,” he said. “I’m not sure what influenced me back then, but it’s always been important to me to help people.”

He moved to Cairns with his wife and two Labradors two years ago, where he can also continue training as a pilot and enjoy scuba diving.

“I love Cairns,” he said. “It’s a beautiful place to live, and there’s a lot of sites for scuba diving!”

HK Surgical
Level 1, 189 Abbott Street
Ph: 4408 6843

Words by Janie Barton | Photos by Catherine Coombs

Invaluable help

Nardine Collier

“I have been through a separation involving children and property, so I know how difficult this time is for families.”

Most people get into serious relationships believing they will last forever, but unfortunately that’s not always the case. And when relationships do fall apart, speaking with family lawyer Nardine Collier is one of the best things a person in that situation can do.

“Going through a relationship break-up is obviously very emotional for people,” said Nardine, who is an accredited specialist in Family Law with a Masters in Applied Law, a Nationally Accredited mediator and Family Law Arbitrator and a lawyer for 23 years. “They’re going through a pretty horrible time in their lives, and need to be treated with kindness, respect and honesty.”

While she specialises in all aspects of family law, it is her own personal experience of a relationship breakdown that is invaluable to her clients.

“I have been through a separation involving children and property, so I know how difficult this time is for families,” said the principal of Collier Lawyers, who also assists with wills and estates. “It’s important for me to help guide them through the process because it can be overwhelming.

“Most people have not been through a divorce or separation before and they have no idea where to start. We give them a plan of action and help them to see that this is not the end of the world. We help them get through it.”

“Have a look at our facebook page “separating but surviving” which is a closed group providing support after separation.

Collier Lawyers also helps clients by offering flexible payment options and assisting those who want to be a self-represented litigant in family law by reviewing their court documents and assisting them with court procedures and etiquette.

“I am upfront with clients about their case and offer solutions to help settle the matter as quickly and affordably as possible,” said Nardine, who also volunteers on the management committee of the Cairns’ Women’s Legal Centre. “One of the first things I tell my clients is that court is your last resort, and we’re not going to go there until we’ve tried everything.

“Sometimes there is no option, but you certainly want to try everything you can before you end up in court because court proceedings are expensive and take many months, sometimes even years, to be finalised.”

She believes mediation is the best way to have a successful outcome.
“Sometimes a legal dispute can be resolved if the parties to the dispute can get together and talk about it,” said Nardine, who has been a mediator for 20 years. “The best agreements are the ones made together.”

Collier Lawyers,
Suite 1/132 Collins Avenue, Edge Hill
Ph: 4214 5666

Words by Janie Barton

Cairns pharmacy wins statewide award

MARLIN Coast Amcal at Smithfield has been named one of the best pharmacies in Queensland.

The family-owned business was named Queensland’s Amcal Pharmacy of the Year at this year’s Sigma Pharmacy Assistant Conference.

Pharmacist Manager Sylvia Kramm said she was proud of her team for achieving the prestigious title.

“As the manager of the store it was a great honour to win this award,” Mrs Kramm said.

“Sometimes you need the recognition to show the team that what we are doing is great and it is recognised.”

Marlin Coast Amcal first opened in 1997 and over the years has expanded its services to include sleep apnoea support, diabetes care and medication compounding.

Jade Playford started working at Marlin Coast Amcal 10 years ago when she was still in high school. ·
Now, she has been listed as a finalist for Retail Manager of the Year.
“We are locally owned and a lot of our customers have been coming to us since we opened,” Miss Playford said.

“Our team in total has approximately 280 years of pharmacy experience, which really helps us to be a better team and have our customers as our number one focus.”

The staff at the Smithfield pharmacy credits the supportive workplace for the store’s success.

Over the last year, it has undergone a major refit and increased its customer engagement, proving you don’t need to travel to a major city to receive premier health care.

Sigma’s General Manager for Amcal and Guardian Brian Tomlin said he was pleased by the award and said it highlighted the importance of pharmacies and the services they provide.

“Our pharmacies play a pivotal role in providing complete healthcare solutions to improve customer and patient health outcomes in our communities,” Mr Tomlin said.

“We are very pleased to be able to recognise their achievements and celebrate the award winners.”

We caught up with owner Phillip Anderson a month after the big win

What’s life been like since being recognised as the Amcal Queensland 2018 Pharmacy of the Year?
Life has been hectic, but great! We have received an overwhelming response from our customers, suppliers and local healthcare professionals. Everyone has been thrilled and want to share the win with us. It is fantastic to be associated with so many great people. Team morale is also at an all-time high in store. The Marlin Coast Amcal team did a fantastic job getting us to this point and its great that they are recognised for this achievement.

What current services and initiatives allow you to stand out?
Our sleep apnoea service is continually growing to raise awareness of the condition. Sleep apnoea affects between 10-38% of the population of which 80% remain undiagnosed. We are encouraging anyone with sleep concerns to come and see one of our sleep consultants. Our medication compounding lab helps children who have trouble taking medications, or when a commercial product is not available. We stock a range of diabetic insulin pump supplies to ensure that our diabetic patients are always looked after. Our pharmacists are proud to provide flu and whooping cough vaccinations every year, ensuring that we increase the number of vaccinated people in the community.

What is the plan going forward into the new year?
We are striving to win the National Amcal Pharmacy of the Year award. We will find ways to grow opportunities and expand our professional services. The award is based on community engagement, and we will be spreading a healthy message beyond the four walls of the pharmacy. We are working with the Primary Care Network (PHN) to expand our services in the Northern Beaches. We have several new initiatives in our compounding lab, including the supply of natural hormone creams and products, working alongside the doctors to provide the best compound for the individual patient. In the new year we will be going to senior’s day and hope to support the local football club to showcase our services to the community. We will be reaching out to the local daycare centres so that our pharmacists can go along and educate the children.

What do you consider to be the reason for your pharmacy’s success?
Our team’s dedication and enthusiasm to ensure our customers are satisfied. Our team is a family, and we treat our customers like family.