Robert JS Thomas
Professor Robert Thomas is the Special Advisor on Health to the Victorian Government and University of Melbourne, and Chair of the Advisory Council of Cancer Australia. He is co-chair of the National Cancer Expert Reference Group (NCERG) an AHMAC and Australian Government committee. He is Deputy Chair of the Board of the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre. His current mission with NCERG is to achieve implementation of the Optimal Care Cancer pathways, a program of work agreed by all jurisdictions. These pathways, now backed by large linked datasets are set to guide provision of uniform care to all populations and reduce variation in outcomes and costs.
As past Chair of the Victorian Cancer Agency and one of the original members of the Agency he worked with Government to provide new recurrent funding for cancer research in Victoria. He was instrumental in developing large scale collaborative cancer research programs across Institutions in Victoria.
Professor Robert Thomas is passionate about cancer system reform, and as Chief Cancer Advisor to Government over the past 10 years has worked to provide all Victorians with the benefits of multidisciplinary care, appropriate psychosocial support for cancer patients and carers, and access to the best translational research. He has helped implement the innovative Cancer Service Framework and Cancer Action Plan for Victoria over this period. He is the previous Director of Surgical Oncology and interim CEO at Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, in Melbourne, Australia and holds the position of Distinguished Fellow in Surgical Oncology at Peter Mac. With linkages to USA he established and was the first Chair of the Surgical Oncology section of the RACS and commenced International Clinical Trials in Surgical Oncology in Melbourne.
Prior to this he was the First University of Melbourne holder of the Chair of Surgery at the Western Hospital Victoria and established a major research program relating to detection and treatment of GI tumours. He has published over 100 peer reviewed papers and books.
He has significant linkages with many international groups including Imperial College Hospital London, The Kings College Hospital, London and the International Prevention Research Institute Lyon France, and is on the Board of the International Cancer Benchmarking Partnership. He was Chair of the international WISH (World innovation Summit on Health) Forum entitled Delivering Affordable Cancer Care, based in Qatar.