Our Team

General Practitioners

Dr Shah Awang

Bio – coming soon

Dr Shalini Balachandran

Bio – coming soon

Dr Saty Bhat


Dr Bhat trained and qualified as a Surgeon before training and working as a GP in the UK. He moved to Australia in 2009. His interests are Minor Surgery, skin diseases including moles and skin cancer, wound management, men’s health, Ear Nose and Throat conditions, contraception (Implanon), gastroenterology and chronic disease management (high blood pressure, diabetes, etc). He has currently taken a break from clinical consulting to spend time developing and leading the two medical centres at Mernda and Laurimar. He plans to start consulting one or two days a week in October 2016 again.

Dr Manasi Deshpande


Manasi graduated from medical school in India in 2002. She migrated to the UK and trained in a broad range of hospital specialties before qualifying as a GP in 2012. She joined our team here in Australia in October 2013. Her Interests are Diabetes, Cardiovascular Risk Management and Women’s and Children’s Health. Manasi also offers the full range of Family Planning Procedures at Mernda Village Medical.

Dr Irina Fast

Dr Irina Fast joined the practice from Oct 2015. Practicing in all aspects of general practice, with a particular interest in Women’s, Paediatric and Mental Health.

Dr Shanaka Kodithuwakku


Dr Shanka obtained her primary qualifications from The Fxaculty of Medicine Colombo – Sri Lanka in 2005. She was trained as an Anaesthesiologist and an Intensivist before she moved on to become a GP. She arrived in Australia in 2013 and obtained her post graduate qualifications in 2014. She is currently an examiner to the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners. She has a special interest in Mental Health and has undergone special skills training to deliver focussed psychological strategies such as counselling, CBT and mindfulness to her patients. She also provides comprehensive Women’s Health including contraception and Antenatal care. She is also interested in Dermatological conditions (skin checks, biopsies, mole removal), Paediatrics and Chronic Disease Management.

Dr Balraj Sandhu

Dr Sandhu qualified as a doctor in the UK in 2003 from Imperial College in London and completed his GP training in 2007. Prior to moving to Melbourne, Dr Sandhu worked as a GP partner at a busy medical practice in England. His main interests include preventive health, chronic disease management and men’s health.

Dr Muna Sharma

Bio – coming soon

Dr Bimal Shrestha


From a primary school teacher in Nepal to a GP in Australia, Dr Shrestha’s career has spanned over three continents.

After completing medical school in 2002, he qualified as a Surgeon in the UK prior to training and working there as a GP. His interests include minor surgery, skin disease & wound management and chronic disease management. He also has an interest in the use of audio-visual aids in the practice of Medicine and is a Clinical Supervisor for medical students from Melbourne University who attend the practice as part of their training.

Dr Seng-Hui Tan


Dr Seng Hui Tan started working with us in 2015. She is interested in Women’s health, Child Health and Chronic Disease management.

Dr Hutchinson Thurairajah

MBBS, FRACGP, FARGP, DCH, JCCA / GP proceduralist

Dr Hutch specializes in skin check and skin lesion removal, minor surgeries, Ultrasound guided cortisone injection and minor procedures including implanon / mirena insertion and removal. He holds a Diploma in Child Health.

Dr Mirenda Shakya

MBBS, MRCGP (2009, UK), FRACGP (AUS) , DFSRH (2014)

Dr Shakya graduated in 2002. She completed her post graduation to specialise as a GP in the UK. She had been working as a GP for 6 years in the UK before moving to Melbourne. She has special interest in women’s health, child health, chronic disease management including diabetes, asthma, copd, hypertension, heart disease and mental health. Outside work, she enjoys song writing, reading and spending time with family.

Support Staff

The members of our support team are seldom seen but always busy. It is they who manage the logistics and day-to-day operations of a general practice this size.

Kirstin Lyons CEO



Felicity Emery

Clinical Care Manager RN, CHN


Lisa Duffus

Operations Manager


Louise Brooks

Group HR Manager


Stephanie Micallef

Practice Leader

Information coming soon.

Aged Care Team

Jodie Hoskins

Aged Care Team Leader


Elaine Hanley

Aged Care Coordinator


Phoebe Lui

Aged Care Coordinator



Aged Care Support Team



Aged Care Support Team


Nurse Team

Possessing formidable medical knowledge and experience, our team of RNs are a central part of our medical practice.

Glenda Guest

Clinical Team Leader

Information coming soon.

Jenny Renshaw-Jones

Practice Nurse Rn1

Jenny is our wise and wonderful and thoroughly experienced Practice Nurse.

Janet Harlow

Practice Nurse Rn1

Janet joined our practice in 2016. Her special interests are immunisation and General Nursing.

Reception Staff

Our front office staff are the heart of our practice.

Reception – Allyson, Brooke, Claire, Donna, Emma, Fiona, Joanne, Judy, Kerry, Marina, Marnie, Michelle and Trish.