2017 Winners

The 2017 NT Health Professional of the Year award Winners are:

Practice Professional of the Year Jacqueline Brandner

Jackie is Practice Manager for Top End Health Service and coordinates the practice’s resources to reach more than 300, 000 patients per year. Jackie is innovative in looking for ways to improve patient experience and has introduced online bookings, an app, and a self -check in kiosk for patients in each practice. Top End Medical Centre patients appreciate the increased ease with which they can book appointments and check in. Jackie is also a strong supporter of My Health Record for the practice and is constantly urging our staff and doctors to encourage and support this program. Since Jackie has been Practice Manger health care outcomes have improved, doctor-staff relationship and staff-staff relationship became smooth, patient satisfaction has risen. 


Health Professional of the Year - Nurse and/or Midwife Lynda Murphy

Health Professional of the Year Award winner Lynda Murphy with Dr Andrew Bell, NT PHN Board Chair

Lynda has been at Santa Teresa for almost two years and has a great relationship with the community, especially the chronic disease patients who require regular follow up. Lynda is respectful and culturally sensitive when engaging with patients and is an advocate for community members. She recently educated and supported a local family to allow an elder in the community to return to country for palliative care. Despite limited palliative care services and restricted aged care services on community, the family now feels confident in caring for this elder. Lynda is also responsible for setting up a regular telehealth clinic with the renal team in Alice Springs which has allowed complex patients to be seen by specialists regularly without needing to travel.


GP Locum Acknowledgement of Service – Dr John Purton

Dr John Purton, has provided 175 days of Locum Relief in 2016-17. Dr John Purton is a resident of Tasmania who has spent nearly half a year in the NT this year delivering high demand Locum GP Services. John is also one of NT PHN’s longest continuously serving Locum GPs. John has been a Locum with NT PHN since 2011(back to the General Practice Network NT days) and in that time has provided Locum Relief in a range of remote locations including Batchelor, Adelaide River, Pine Creek, Ampilatwatja, Timber Creek, Lajamanu, Kalkarindji, and Galiwinku. 


Health Professional of the Year – General Practicioner Dr Odette Phillips

Dr Odette Phillips has worked in the remote Northern Territory for 10 years and she is staunch advocate for remote clients with external service providers to ensure good outcomes for the clients. To support client outcomes she has created a unified and streamlined approach to specialist service delivery in the KWHB region and established networks within the NT for clients in the KWHB region that has enabled better referral pathways and better access to services previously not available. Odette is leading a comprehensive clinical governance approach at KWHB within a complex remote primary health care environment while maintaining an active hands on clinical role as a GP and providing high level clinical leadership. She is a strong support for medical students and registrars working at KWHB to foster an interest in remote health medicine and is dedicated to maintaining and developing skilled, experienced and culturally safe clinical staff.


Health Professional of the Year – Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioner Larissa Meneri

Larissa is a Leader, Educator and Counselor of Ntaria Community and a mentor of the Aboriginal Health Practitioners that has been employed at Ntaria Clinic as an Aboriginal Health Practitioner. Larissa is also a current Board member of the Western Aranda Health Aboriginal health Corporation as well as being a member of other boards. Larissa Meneri has worked as an Aboriginal Health Practitioner for the past ten (10) years and has built a reputation amongst the Ntaria community and has matured into an exceptional Aboriginal Health Practitioner with excellent skills in the day-to-day complexities of Primary Health Care as well as Emergency procedures. Larissa is the person who the Ntaria Community, health staff, superiors and peers look to when a problem arises in the Community and she is respected and appreciated at Ntaria Clinic by the whole Community. Larissa mentors and advises other health staff, Aboriginal Health Practitioners and Remote Area Nurses when asked regardless of the problem due to her knowledge and understanding of day-to-day Health Care and the community needs.


Health Professional of the Year – Allied Health Practitioner Simon Cavanagh

Health Professional of the Year Award winner Simon Cavanagh with Dr Andrew Bell, NT PHN Board Chair

Simon was the first full time podiatrist at The Royal Darwin Hospital, employed approximately 2 years ago, and was a sole podiatrist for the first sixteen months. He has been dedicated to developing a culturally appropriate, evidence-based Podiatry service and has added great expertise to the high risk foot team at the Royal Darwin Hospital including implementing new off-loading modalities which have greatly improved outcomes for patients with serious foot complications such as ulceration and Charcot arthropathy. Simon has developed the service to now include three podiatrists, who share his passion and vision to improve the diabetes foot health outcomes in the NT, and hopefully decrease this significant burden of disease. Having many years of high risk foot management experience, he is a mentor to the newer members of the podiatry team, visiting health workers and students.