Victorian State Medical Director - Dr Helen Opdam
Dr Helen Opdam is the inaugural State Medical Director of DonateLife Victoria since 2009. She is a Senior Intensive Care Specialist at the Austin Hospital in Melbourne and Director of Warringal Private Hospital Intensive Care Unit. Her intensive care interests include improving patient care through enhancing hospital systems and neuro-intensive care.
Dr Opdam has a long standing commitment to organ and tissue donation. In 1998 in Victoria Dr Opdam led the implementation of the routine review of hospital deaths with aim of optimising identification of potential donors and ensuring the option for donation is discussed with patients' families. In 2002 she was appointed as a medical consultant to the Victorian Organ Donation Agency, providing medical suitability and other clinical advice on donation cases. She was on the National Institute of Clinical Studies (NICS) Advisory Committee that provided the National Organ Donation Collaborative (2006-2009).
Dr Opdam is a member of the Australian and New Zealand Intensive Care Society (ANZICS) Death and Organ Donation Working Party that has developed the ANZICS Statement on Death and Organ Donation. She regularly facilitates Medical ADAPT workshops that provide education to Intensive Care Specialists and trainees and other doctors on brain death and organ donation.
Dr Opdam is the Chair of the Organ and Tissue Authority Data and Audit Working Group, which oversees the national audit of deaths to detect potential organ donors, and is also a member of the Vigilance and Surveillance Working Group.
Dr Opdam graduated from Monash University in 1990 with First Class Honours.
Victorian Director of Nursing and Operations – Kelly Rogerson
Kelly Rogerson is a Registered Nurse, holding a Master of Nursing and Graduate Diploma of Nursing (Intensive care), as well as being an accredited Surveyor for the Australian Council on Healthcare Standards. Her role holds the accountability of all operations of the broader donation network across the state.
Kelly has over 20 years' experience in nursing management, intensive care, surgical (acute, emergency and elective) community and medical nursing, recruitment and retention, waiting list management, project management, lean methodologies, re design, quality systems and health care improvement, accreditation, clinical risk and root cause analysis, Falls and pressure injuries and clinical practice.
Kelly's prior roles have included major metropolitan teaching hospitals and health services, such as position of Deputy Director of Nursing: Clinical Practice at Southern Health in Victoria and Quality Manager for hospitals at Casey, Cranbourne and Dandenong, Victoria. Earlier work experience has included Nurse Unit Manager roles within Surgical Acute/Elective /Colorectal and mixed surgical. She has been a Care coordinator incorporating Post-acute care, and community based case management of post-acute patients.
Kelly has further experience in governance, system redesign and project and team management, as well as being involved in developing the Clinical governance framework for organ donation at a Commonwealth level.
DonateLife Victoria Staff
DonateLife Victoria has 11 highly trained nursing professionals called Donation Specialist Coordinators (DSCs), as well as a Clinical Manager, a Director of Nursing and Operations, Administrative staff, Education Coordinators, a Data and Audit Coordinator, a Communications Adviser, and a Donor Family Support Coordinator.
DonateLife Victoria also supports a network of hospital based organ and tissue donation clinical staff including 23 medical specialists and 33 nurses across Victoria. The team is responsible for providing professional donation services, data collection and healthcare professional education, as well as implementing best practices in donation to help increase organ and tissue donation performance at a local hospital level.
DonateLife Victoria "Community Champions"
DonateLife Victoria operates a "Community Champions" program, through which donor families, transplant recipients and family members, health workers and members of the general community can volunteer to help "champion" the cause of organ and tissue donation in our community.
Our champions help DonateLife Victoria in its vital goal to increase community awareness, discussion and acceptance of organ and tissue donation. With appropriate support, activities can include helping our staff deliver community information stalls, attend events, participate in community talks, national promotional activities and engaging organisations within their local area.
The Program offers four streams of activity – "General", Speaker", "Leader", "Specialist" - designed to offer tasks depending on your interest, while directly contributing to achieving our goals. An induction program with separate training modules is offered, supported by peer mentoring, staff liaison and bi-monthly newsletters. While general opportunities are always available, progression is also possible to formal speaker and leadership functions on a voluntary basis under our program of accreditation.
For more information please contact General Enquiries