Medical Conference


Dr Mark Podgorski

Mark Podgorski trained in Rheumatology at St George and Royal North Shore Hospitals, Sydney, and in Bath UK, and has been actively engaged in Private Practice in Northern Sydney since 1989, with involvement in the academic unit at Royal North Shore hospital. He graduated in Medicine with Honours, and subsequent Master of Health Law, from University of Sydney, and has a Doctor of Medicine degree from Southampton, UK. He has many interests outside Rheumatology, including Photography, Music, Travel, Skiing, and loves his life with wife Lynne, sons


  • Fibromyalgia
  • Vasculitis
  • Shoulder pain
  • Seronegative arthritis
  • Biological disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDS)

Dr Lesley Andrews

Following 12 years in general practice with a focus on women’s health, Lesley completed a Masters of Medicine in Reproductive Health and Human Genetics.

Her career in hereditary cancer began as co-ordinator of the Sydney Jewish Breast Ovarian Cancer Study, and cancer genetics in the Jewish community remains one of her interests, 20 years later.

Since 2000 she has worked at the Hereditary Cancer Clinic at the Prince of Wales Hospital, caring for families with a wide range of familial cancer syndromes, and is now head of that department and a Conjoint Senior Lecturer in the Prince of Wales Clinical School at UNSW.

Dr Andrews has been involved in establishing risk management clinics for women at high risk of breast and ovarian cancer. She has an interest in clinical research and has been involved in a number of studies looking at the impact of early surgical menopause on health and wellbeing. She is using innovative ways to meet the increasing demand for cancer genetic services including writing an online program to provide pre-test information and consent.


  • The new genetics- the roles and consequences of modern advancement
  • Reproductive genetics- Are we moving too far towards eugenics?
  • Genetic testing in oncology
  • The future: understanding epigenetics, gene therapy and genetic modification


Dr Fiona Foo

Dr Fiona Foo is an experienced General and Interventional Cardiologist. She graduated from the University of Western Australia with honours, and completed her Advanced Cardiology Training in Fremantle Hospital (WA). She then undertook Interventional Cardiology Fellowships in Canada and Scotland.

Dr Foo performs coronary angiography, angioplasty/stents. She actively promotes Women and Heart disease, giving regular presentations, and has written numerous articles regarding women and heart disease, their unique cardiovascular risk factors, and pregnancy-related risk factors. She has a strong interest in sports cardiology, being very active herself. She sees patients from the “weekend warrior” to the elite athlete. She also advocates a healthy lifestyle, and practices what she preaches; with an extensive exercise regime and endorses a heart-healthy diet.

Dr Fiona Foo is actively involved in pro bono international Aid work. She regularly visits CWM Hospital in Suva, Fiji to provide interventional cardiology services and teaching, since 2013. She has also taught and provided interventional cardiology services in Dhulikhel hospital, Nepal and performed the first angioplasty/stent there in 2012. She is passionate about providing cardiology services/medical help to the less fortunate.

Dr Foo is an accredited Medical Officer at Macquarie University Hospital, Sydney Adventist Hospital, Norwest Hospital. She works with Sydney Cardiology Group and in the MQ (Macquarie University) Health Cardiology Clinic.


  1. Women and Heart disease
  2. The Athletes Heart
  3. Management of Coronary Artery Disease: Stents, Bypass or Medical management?
  4. (Relatively) New Devices in (Structural) Heart disease


Dr Andrew Field

M.B., B.S., F.R.A.N.Z.C.O. Ophthalmologist

Andrew graduated from Monash University,1980 and worked as a General Practitioner in rural Queensland, third world PNG and suburban Melbourne until 1988.

He trained as an ophthalmologist at the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital for three years and then did a Fellowship in Cornea and External Disease at John Hopkins Hospital, USA. Worked as a Senior Registrar in Southampton, UK, before commencing private practice at Cairns Eye & Laser Clinic in 1994. Areas of special interest include cataract and pterygium surgery, along with diabetic retinal laser surgery and treatment of wet AMD.


  • Pterygium and its cousins

Unconventional Conventions is an Accredited Education Provider. Each of our continuing professional development programs is individually designed to address topics of current interest and is relevant to our professionals and their practices. The Academic Advisory Committee, comprising of medical professionals from across Australia will work with recognised and respected specialists to prepare a selection of presentations, workshops, case studies and panels discussions which will be specially prepared for our conferences.

Unconventional Convention’ director for the past 25 years is a practising doctor who takes pride in offering a comprehensive, stimulating and relevant academic program. We aim to ensure that the combination of lectures, workshops, and training activities make up more than 50% of daily activities during the main conference tour.

Many of our travel destinations provide an opportunity for local professional contribution and cultural exchange through workshops and structured visits to local clinics.

Our conference programs are prepared over a 12-month period and full details are available 3 months prior to the conference. Unconventional Conventions is an accredited education provider for RACGP. Application for ACRRM points is made for each conference. Dental programs are certifiable with the Dental Board of Australia. Specialists may apply for CPD points at their own discretion.

Unconventional Volunteering: Introduces Australian doctors to the world of medical volunteering in developing countries.

Current Academic Advisory Committee members

Dr Diana Hart OAM

GP in Brookvale, NSW, with interests in travel medicine (ISTM international certificate – CTH 2008), sports medicine (M Sp Med (UNSW) 2001), shared antenatal care (currently on the Northern Area Committee), and Skin cancer (Healthcert skin cancer medicine and surgery certificates).

Dr Jayne Ingham

GP in North Lakes, Queensland, involved in education, teaching of GP registrars and medical students from the University of Queensland . She is Chair of GP partners which is a GP network in Metro North Brisbane. She arranges education sessions for GPs with local specialists and on relevant topics and writes the GP partners monthly bulletin.

A/Prof Ralph Audehm

GP in Carlton, Victoria, and is an Honorary Clinical Associate Professor at the Department of General Practice, University of Melbourne. He has had a long-standing interest in the management of chronic conditions in General Practice especially diabetes and heart disease. He teaches medical students, GP registrars and General Practitioners.

Dr Alan Giles

Senior Staff Specialist, Emergency Department, Sydney Adventist Hospital, Wahroonga, NSW. He is the Area Medical Educator in Emergency Medicine and Hospital Skills Program Director for South Western Sydney and Sydney Local Health District.

Dr Margot Cunich

GP in Bondi Junction, NSW, and co-director of Unconventional Conventions. She is the Chair of the Academic Advisory Committee and designs and administers all the conference programs. She teaches medical students and registrars

Dr Gary Kilov (1:42)
Dr Asha Nair (1:31)
Dr Ralph Audehm (1:11)
Dr Diana Hart & Dr Roger Scurr (1:39)