Congratulations to Adjunct Professor John Kelly, head of the Victorian Melanoma Service, on being awarded the Member of the Order of Australia.
Prof. Kelly received the award for significant service to medicine through the management and treatment of melanoma, and service to education. He founded the Victorian Melanoma Service in 1994, and credits his colleagues who’ve helped him achieve this recognition.
“The service has grown and now we are involved in caring for more than half of the melanoma cases in Victoria – more than 1500 people a year,” said Prof. Kelly.
While the number of melanoma cases diagnosed in Victoria increases, Prof. Kelly sees evidence that people are listening to warnings about the dangers of sun exposure.
“We are starting to turn the ship around; we are starting to see rates fall in the under 40s but they are still going up sharply in over 70s,” he said.
Prof. Kelly has contributed to advancing treatment for people suffering the late stages of melanoma.
“It used to be a death sentence and now a significant percentage of people are able to recover or stabilize their condition. These advances are game changing, a new paradigm in cancer care.”
Prof. Kelly says it's a privilege to help patients at The Alfred as they have access to the range of specialists involved in treating melanoma all under the one roof.
“Credit goes to The Alfred who backed the idea of a multidisciplinary treatment service when it was still a new idea and bit different to the way things were done.”
Ultimately it’s the personal engagement with patients that drives Prof. Kelly.
“Patients do better if they feel like they are fully informed and have some control in the management of their problem.”