Meet Our Team

Doctors

Dr Vafa Derakshan – MBBS, FRACGP, B OPTOM (hons)
Dr Vafa Derakshan has recently joined our practice after working for the last 5 years as a General Practitioner in Penrith. He originally trained in Optometry at UNSW, before completing his MBBS as the University of Notre Dame in Sydney. He had rotations in Psychiatry, Respiratory, Neurology and Orthopaedics at Nepean Hospital, and Completed his GP training in Western Sydney in 2017. He also has a special interest in Natural Medicine, and has completed several courses including the Australasian Preliminary course in Nutritional and Environmental Medicine, Skin Cancer Medicine through University of Queensland, as well as an interest in Gut health and Microbiome.
Special Interests:
Natural Medicine Gut Health Psychiatry
Dr Maha Qidwai – (MBBS, FRACGP, BMedSc, DCH)
Background - Local Sydney sider Dr Maha graduated with BMedSC (UNSW), and MBBS (USYD) in 2007. Dr Maha has also completed her Diploma in Child health, a certificate in Sexual health and Family planning. Dr Maha has completed her FRACGP and is also a clinical instructor and trainer at Family Planning NSW. Dr Maha is also a 300 hour registered meditation and yoga teacher.


Special Interests- Holistic and Integrative health care, combining both Eastern and Western medicine. Dr Maha aims to empower her patients in their Health care and frequently uses yoga and meditation as a preventative and treatment modality. She has a special interest also in Women's and Sexual health, and offers implanon and IUD (both hormonal and copper) insertions and removals, and medical termination of pregnancy.

Personal Interests- Acupuncture, Yoga, meditation, nature, sneakers and travel

Dr Sarah Weaver (MBBS (USyd) M. Psych.Med. (UNSW) Grad.Dip. Couple Therapy)
After almost 47 years working as a GP in the Inner West Dr Weaver has retired from general medical practice. However she is continuing her mental health and psychological counselling practice at RMC. To enquire about seeing Dr Weaver please contact reception. She is also continuing her role as a GP educator in mental health with the Black Dog Institute. She looks forward to spending more time with her 6 young grandchildren and pursuing various hobbies.
Dr David Ritchie (MBCHB DCH DGP FRCNZGP)
Background - Dr Ritchie qualified as a GP in New Zealand and started his own practice in 1985. This grew into an integrative Medical Centre with 5 doctors and some 30 staff.
Special Interests - He has a strong interest in child health and child development and behaviour.He has an interest in chronic illness and working with a team to improve quality of life for each patient.
Dr Debra Tattersall (MBBS (Syd))
Background - Dr Debra Tattersall graduated from Sydney University and has been in General practice for 25 years, working on the far north coast and Sydney’s western suburbs. She is accredited in Shared Antenatal care, women’s health, including intra-uterine contraception and hormone implants. Special Interests - She has an interest in adolescent and mental health. Personal Interests Loves spending time with her family, running, gardening and reading.
Dr Zoe Boyatzis (BA (Media & Communications); MBBS, FRACGP, Dip.Child Health)
Background - Dr Boyatzis graduated from the University of Notre Dame with an MBBS in 2011. She completed her FRAGCP in 2016. Before entering General Practice she worked in Emergency Medicine at Royal North Shore Hospital.
Special Interests - She enjoys Women's Health, having completed a certificate in Sexual and Reproductive Health. She is also passionate about paediatrics and completed her diploma of Child Health in 2014.
Dr Celine Doeuk (B.Pharm (Hons) MBBS)
Background - Dr Doeuk graduated from the University of Queensland with an Honours Degree in Pharmacy. She completed her medical Degree at Griffith University and undertook her junior training at The Princess Alexandra Hospital in Brisbane and went on to work as a Surgical Registrar at the Gold Coast University Hospital for 3 years.
Special Interests - She enjoys the diversity that General Practice offers. Dr Doeuk is an accredited Robotic, Laparoscopic and General Surgical Assistant. Given her proficient surgical background, she has a keen interest in minor procedures, skin cancer excision and cosmetic surgery.
Personal Interests - Born and raised in Lyon France, Dr Doeuk speaks French as her first language. Outside of Medicine she has started piano and Mandarin classes for beginners. She comes from a Chinese background and enjoys travelling and learning about different cultures.
Dr Melissa Di Sano (MD, FRACGP, Dip. Child Health)
Background - Dr Di Sano graduated from University of New South Wales in 2013 and worked for two years at Royal North Shore Hospital before entering General Practice training. She completed her FRACGP in 2018. She completed a diploma of Child Health in 2017.
Special Interests - She enjoys all aspects of General Practice and the diversity of seeing patients of all ages and backgrounds. In particular she has an interest in Women's Health and paediatrics.
Dr Lisa Luo (MBBS; MS; Dip. Child Health)
Background - Dr Luo graduated from the University of New South Wales. Before entering General Practice, she worked in various hospitals including Royal North Shore, Westmead Children's, Bankstown and St George. She completed her Masters of Surgery at the University of Sydney in 2012 and Diploma of Child Health on 2015.
Special Interests - She enjoys all aspects of General Practice and in particular, paediatrics and minor procedures.
Dr Portia Predny (MD, Dip. Child Health)
Background - Dr Predny completed her medical degree at the University of Newcastle in 2011, before working in Royal North Shore Hospital for three years and gaining particular experience in Paediatric Medicine. She is currently a GP Registrar and expects to complete her training in 2018.
Special Interests - Dr Predny was attracted to General Practice for the opportunity it provides to provide care to a variety of people at all the different stages of their lives. She has a particular interest in providing quality health care to members of the LGBTIQ+ community, as well as in Paediatrics and Women's health. She is also passionate about promoting health through lifestyle, and is a proponent of the Health at Every Size approach to wellness.
Personal Interests - Outside of medicine, Dr Predny enjoys hiking, rock climbing, dance and performing, and dabbles with Archery and playing the ukulele.
Dr Sheeba De – (MBBS, FRACGP)
Background - Dr Sheeba De is a motivated, dedicated and clinically competent General Practitioner with over 10 years of General Practice experience in Australia. She did comprehensive General Practice training in the UK before moving to Melbourne in 2008.
Special Interests - Dr De has recently relocated to Sydney with her family and is looking forward to working in a local Medical Practice. Her special interest are women’s and children’s health. She speaks English, Hindi and Bengali.
Personal Interests- She is a keen traveler and enjoys participating in local fundraising activities. On weekends she enjoys spending time with her family and 2 children.

Practice Staff

Claire Knight
Claire studied a Bachelor of Nursing in Country Victoria before relocating to Sydney to pursue her career. She has a background in Medical/ Surgical Theatre and has been working in General Practice for the last three years. Claire is certified as a Nurse Immuniser and is able to perform Pap Smears. Her interests are in Family and Child Health, preventative health initiatives and minor procedures.
Donna – Practice Manager
Hannah - Receptionist
Vanessa - Receptionist
Sue - Receptionist
Madeleine - Receptionist
Henry - Receptionist

Allied Health

Belinda Connolly – Psychologist
Belinda is a Registered Psychologist with experience working with adults across community health, private and not-for-profit mental health sectors. She works with adults with a wide range of presenting issues including stress, anxiety, depression, trauma, alcohol and other substance use problems, relationship and adjustment difficulties. She is committed to providing a warm and welcoming environment for her clients, allowing them to explore their challenges in a compassionate and non-judgmental atmosphere. Belinda aims to empower her clients with the skills and strategies needed to more effectively manage the difficulties and challenges in their lives.


Areas of expertise: • Anxiety, including generalised anxiety disorder and panic disorder • Stress management • Depression, including major depressive disorder • Obsessive-compulsive disorder • Adjustment difficulties • Relationship challenges • Alcohol and other substance use problems including illicit and prescription drug use • Trauma • Self-esteem, confidence and assertiveness difficulties.


Her approach: Belinda utilises a range of evidence-based psychological treatments including but not limited to Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Motivational Interviewing, Dialectical Behavioral therapy, interpersonal and solution-focused approaches. Belinda’s approach is strengths-based and client-focused, with an emphasis on building a strong therapeutic alliance with her clients.

Dr Natalie Shavit – Senior Clinical Psychologist
Dr Natalie Shavit has extensive experience in assessing and treating a wide range of psychological issues including anxiety, depression, stress, anger, pain management, relationship difficulties, LGBT issues and adjustment problems, to name a few. Natalie has nearly 20 years experience specialising in both short and long term therapy, including: Cognitive Behaviour Therapy for depression, anxiety disorders and stress; Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (a mindfulness based CBT) for certain personality disorders and Psychodynamic Psychotherapy for relationship issues and more long-standing problems which may not respond to CBT.
Harris Tembakis – Physiotherapist
Background – Harris graduated with a Doctor of Physiotherapy following studies in Masters of Clinical Exercise Physiology and Undergraduate degree in Exercise and Sports Science. He has worked in many areas of physiotherapy including hospital, semi-professional and elite sports. .
Special interests – His passion however lies in workplace onsite setting and private practice where utilities his hands on approach coupled with individualised exercise programs to achieve set goals, reduce pain, prevent future injury and improve overall functional capacity.
Personal interests – Away from work Harris enjoys the simple things in life being active and playing sports with friends, spending time with his family (wife and daughter) and supporting his beloved Liverpool Football Club.
Erika Hung – Dietitian
Background - Erika is a qualified Accredited Practicing Dietitian who is passionate about empowering her patients to make their health goals a reality. She is dedicated to working with her patients, taking the time to understand their individual lifestyles and creating small achievable health behaviour changes that they can sustain lifelong.
Special Interests -Erika has experience in helping her patients manage a range of health conditions through their diets, in particular chronic diseases such as T2DM, heart disease and weight management. During degree in Nutrition and Dietetics, she has also grown a strong interest in plant-based nutrition and gut health. With a passion for continuously learning, she is committed to ensuring she is up-to-date with the latest evidence in her areas of speciality and the ever-evolving field of nutrition. She greatly enjoys translating the complex scientific nutrition information she learns into personalised, easy-to-digest and practical advice for her patients. Erika also enjoys spreading her knowledge in food and nutrition through group education sessions, cooking classes and short blog articles.
Personal Interests -In her spare time, Erika enjoys getting outdoors, taking long walks and finding new cafes to enjoy food with her family and friends. She believes the social settings and the people we enjoy food with are equally important as the nutrients within them and hopes to carry this belief through the way she practices.
Kay Pfeiffer – Psychotherapist, Counsellor & Mental Health Occupational Therapist
Kay has thirty years experience in the public and private mental health systems including seventeen years in private practice. Kay provides interventions for a range of mental health presentations such as anxiety and depression, loss and grief, ante- and post-natal anxiety and depression, trauma, PTSD, past sexual abuse and complex trauma, life stage challenges, menopause, personality vulnerabilities, adjustment difficulties, relationship challenges, eating difficulties, and pain management. Kay’s interventions include Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT), Trauma-informed Care and Practice, Mindfulness, Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT), Narrative Therapy, Skills training, and Psychodynamically informed therapy. By working through difficulties and challenges in therapy, clients discover self-worth, empowerment, and fulfilment in their lives. Kay provides treatment under Medicare with a valid Care Plan in place.
Brigitte Zonta – Coaching Psychologist – BA SocSci (Psychology), BA Teach, PostGradDipPsych, MSci (Coaching Psychology), Gottman Therapy Level 1 & 2
Background: Brigitte Zonta is highly experienced coaching psychologist who has worked in various private and public sectors for over the last 10 years. Brigitte completed an Undergraduate degree in General Psychology and a post graduate degree in Teaching at The University of Western Sydney, a Postgraduate Degree in psychology at University of Wollongong and a master’s degree in Coaching Psychology from The University of Sydney. As a registered and coaching Psychologist, Brigitte is passionate about working with a range of individuals in helping them understand, develop and manage life! Brigitte works with individuals to overcome a range of difficulties that can affect wellbeing at home, work and school. Brigitte is experienced at providing treatment for various problems, including but not limited to treating clients with anxiety, low self-esteem, lack of confidence, relationship challenges, pre-marital success sessions, managing change, depression, trauma, phobias, anger, carer and study stress, adjustment problems and parenting concerns. Special Interests: Brigitte likes to practice using the principles of positive psychology, supporting people to feel more empowered in their lives as well as build confidence in decisions they make throughout life. Brigitte strives to support her clients to face everyday life and internal challenges, as well as uncover and develop their unique strengths and capabilities to create their best life and self. Brigitte works from a strengths-based approach and is driven to help people shift their negative thinking, feeling and behavioural patterns and become more productive and positively engaged in their own lives. Working closely with medical practitioners to help supplement the body with what is missing so that the individual is holistically supported and performing at optimal levels. Brigitte is an advocate for promoting calm minds and healthy bodies. As a highly sought-after executive coach, Brigitte has led a rewarding and successful career supporting professionals, executives and organisations reach new heights. As a coaching psychologist here at Novu Health, Brigitte will be providing therapeutic services, as well as executive, performance and corporate coaching. Personal Interests: Brigitte has worked in various cities in Australia and worked abroad in the Middle East for some years, fuelling her passion for travel. When possible, Brigitte takes the opportunity to head out on a new adventure to explore new places. Most weekend you’ll find her with family, exercising, trying out a local brunch spot or lazing by the beach.
Naim Bireroglu
Background – Naim has completed a Bachelor of Health Science/Mastering in Podiatric Medicine from the University of Western Sydney. His experience covers all scopes of podiatric care including biomechanical, chronic disease, pediatric and general podiatry. He has worked in many different settings including mobile podiatry, high risk in public hospital setting both local and internationally as well as having extensive private practice podiatry experience. His love of sports (including basketball and powerlifting amongst many other sports) has also fueled his interest in sports biomechanics in which is his most experienced scope of practice.
Special Interests - Sports biomechanics and Chronic Disease Management.
Personal Interests - Outside of work, Naim enjoys playing basketball, powerlifting and traveling