A view from VIC doctors on the COVID-19 frontline

Hear from your colleagues (Live & online)
The current wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in Victoria has created a variety of challenging and demanding situations for all doctors and healthcare workers. The daily trials and tribulations of working through a pandemic raises questions, issues and concerns in many areas - emergency, intensive care, aged care, surgery and GP clinics.

Live webinar recorded Thursday 3 September

Access the recording of our 'View from the COVID-19 frontline' panel discussion. The webinar includes a panel of doctors from a variety of sectors, sharing their experiences and those of their colleagues dealing with COVID-19.


Meet your webinar panel

Dr Jane Deacon

Dr Jane Deacon 
MBBS – Manager, Medico-legal advisory services

Jane joined MDA National in 2006 as a Medico-legal Adviser. She has a background in general practice and ran her own practice for many years, and continues in general practice part-time. In 2016 she completed a Post Graduate Diploma in Health Law from the University of Sydney.

Her role at MDA National is to assist Members with medico-legal enquiries, complaints, and investigations. She is also involved with the provision of in-house medical opinions, education and articles.


Dr Simon Benson

Dr Simon Benson Bsc (Hons) MBChB MRCGP FRACGP – Physician

Simon is a Senior Physician (GP) at one of Melbourne's largest medical clinics and urgent care centres. He is also a Clinical Supervisor at the University of Melbourne, an Australian General Practice Trainer at Murray City Country Coast and a fellow of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners. He has a special interest in healthcare for adolescents and young adults and medical technology. In addition to practicing and teaching medicine, Simon serves as a non-executive director of an Australian health insurance company.

Simon obtained a Bachelor of Medicine, a Bachelor of Surgery (MBChB) and a Bachelor of Science with First Class Honours from the University of Bristol. He was awarded seven university prizes, including the Wellbeing for Women award for his work on Folic acid supplementation in Fiji. He has also studied at Harvard University in his special interest area of cybersecurity risk in healthcare.


Dr Sarah Jones

Dr Sarah Jones MBBS, FCICM, FRACP – ICU Specialist, Northern Health

Dr Sarah Jones, FCICM FRACP, is an Intensivist and Nephrologist, currently working as an Intensivist at the Northern Hospital in Melbourne. Over recent months she has looked after a number of critically ill patients with COVID-19. Sarah undertook her postgraduate training in the UK and moved out to Australia in 2011, initially working at The Royal Melbourne Hospital. For nearly five years she worked as an Intensivist and Nephrologist in Darwin. She relocated back to Melbourne in late January 2020, coinciding with the onset of the COVID-19 global pandemic. Her clinical interests include peri-operative medicine and obstetric medicine.


Jurstine Daruwally

Dr Jurstine Daruwalla MBBS, PhD – HPB/General Surgical Fellow at Northern Health

Jurstine is a HPB/General Surgical Fellow at Northern Health in Victoria. She completed a combined MBBS/PhD program at the University of Melbourne in 2011. She is passionate about global surgery and would ultimately like to join Médecins Sans Frontières. Having undertaken surgical electives in India, South Africa and Fiji, she is familiar with working in challenging environments with limited resources. The COVID-19 pandemic has presented a unique set of challenges to General Surgery, as well as impacts on training and resource allocation. She is currently undertaking research on the effects of the lockdown on Acute General Surgery presentations at the Northern.


Dr Belinda Hibble

Dr Belinda Hibble MBBS, FACEM, MPH, DCH

Belinda is a full time Emergency Medicine (EM) Staff Specialist at University Hospital Geelong, Victoria. She also maintains a casual appointment as an EM Physician at St John of God Hospital Geelong.

Belinda completed her medical degree at Monash University, and has spent the bulk of her time training and working in the Geelong and Melbourne regions. Belinda is a passionate advocate for hospital and healthcare system improvement, and is a member of the MDA National State Advisory Committee (Victoria). She is heavily involved with the Australasian College for Emergency Medicine.

Belinda has been deeply involved in COVID-19 planning at both a local departmental and state wide EM systems level.


Dr Ben Veness

Dr Benjamin Veness MBBS, MPH – Psychiatry Registrar, Alfred Health

Benjamin Veness is a psychiatry registrar in Melbourne and an advocate for doctors’ and medical students’ health. In addition to being interested in what we can do for ourselves, he is also passionate about improving the system we work and study within. This interest in the broader, system-level issues might have come in part from Ben’s first career in the corporate sector. Ben has also completed a Master of Public Health, for which he was later awarded the Edmund Barton Medal from The University of Sydney.

While a medical student, Ben was President of the Australian Medical Students’ Association (AMSA) and served in multiple capacities within the state and federal branches of the Australian Medical Association (AMA). He also spent two terms as a Fellow of the Senate of The University of Sydney. In 2013, Ben was awarded a Churchill Fellowship to investigate student mental health interventions and services overseas.


Dr JS Dhaliwal

Dr Jagdeesh Singh Dhaliwal MBChB, FRCGP, FRACGP, MSc – GP, Chair – North Western Melbourne PHN COVID-19 Aged Care Expert Advisory Group

Originally from London, Jag is a Melbourne GP with a special interest in aged care. He has experience of working in corporate and clinical management, education, medical indemnity and strategy. Jag has lectured widely in the UK, USA, Latin America and Asia and his particular interests lie in healthcare leadership and supporting new technologies and innovation.