Our Staff

Anaesthetists

Our Doctors

Dr Brian Draganic

BMed BMSc(Hons) FRACS

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Assoc. Prof. Stephen Smith

MBBS BSc FRACS MS PhD

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Dr Hasitha Balasuriya

MBBS FRACS CSSANZ

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Dr Michelle Chen

MBBS, MS (Colorectal), FRACS, CSSANZ

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Dr Brian Draganic

Dr Brian Draganic is a Senior Lecturer in Surgery at the University of Newcastle and head of the Colorectal Surgical Department at John Hunter Hospital, Newcastle Australia.

He graduated from the University of Newcastle in 1990 and completed general surgical training in the Hunter area before completing his Australian Colorectal Fellowship years at Concord and Royal Prince Alfred Hospitals, and gaining further experience in the UK before commencing consultant practice.

He established the endoluminal ultrasound and anorectal physiology services at John Hunter Hospital and the Hunter Area Biofeedback Service on commencing consultant practice in the area and maintains a clinical, teaching and research role in the management of defecatory disorders along with a busy colorectal practice.

Assoc. Prof. Stephen Smith

Assoc. Prof. Stephen Smith graduated from the University of New South Wales in 1993. He completed general surgical training in 2001, including a year at Adenbrookes, Cambridge UK. He completed Colorectal CSSANZ Fellowship in 2003 with stints at RPA, Sydney and Royal Melbourne and Western, Melbourne. He completed Masters of Surgery in 2005 at Sydney University. He is currently a VMO Colorectal surgeon with appointments at John Hunter Hospital and the University of Newcastle, with a particular interest in enhanced recovery in colorectal surgery.

Dr Hasitha Balasuriya

Dr Hasitha Balasuriya is a colorectal surgeon who moved to Newcastle with his family in 2022. He graduated from the University of Western Sydney and was awarded a Fellowship of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons in 2019 and is a Member of the Colorectal Surgical Society of Australia and New Zealand and the Gastroenterological Society of Australia. He trained at Concord and Royal Prince Alfred Hospitals in Sydney as well as rural and regional hospitals in NSW. He gained further exposure to colorectal surgery, undertaking sub-specialised fellowships in Edinburgh, UK (laparoscopic colorectal surgery, advanced endoscopy, trans-anal endoscopic microsurgery), Sir Charles Gairdner, WA (CSSANZ fellowship, sarcoma, organ preservation) and Concord, NSW (laparoscopic and open colorectal cancer and inflammatory bowel disease surgery). He is a keen teacher, researcher, and patient advocate, and prides himself on his technical expertise and bedside manner. 

He has public VMO appointments at John Hunter and Belmont Hospitals, and private appointments at Newcastle Private Hospital and Newcastle Endoscopy Centre.   

Dr Michelle Chen

Dr Michelle Chen will be joining Newcastle Colorectal Surgery in February 2024. 

Dr Chen studied at UNSW and completed surgical training through the Liverpool Hospital network in 2019. Dr Chen completed two years of CSSANZ training in 2024 at Nepean Hospital and Monash Hospital.She can speak Mandarin and Cantonese.  Dr Chen has an interest in minimally invasive surgery, proctology and inflammatory bowel disease and will be undertaking further robotic training in 2024. She has a keen interest in research and teaching and will be looking to obtain a conjoint appointment with the University of Newcastle.  

Dr Chen is taking bookings for new public and private patients, all referrals can be emailed to [email protected].  Dr Chen will operate at John Hunter and Belmont Hospitals, Newcastle Private Hospital, Lake Macquarie Private Hospital, Lingard Private Hospital and Newcastle Endoscopy Centre

Administration Staff

Amarlee
Practice Manager

Kerrie
Secretary

Helen
Secretary

Kirsty
Secretary

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