SSMRF October News

Young and Old put their Best Foot Forward for Medical Research


To date $150,000.00 has been raised for medical research – it’s not too late to help us reach our goal.

Support your Local Team – Donations accepted until 30 November – Donate Here Now! 


Age is no barrier and to prove it, Alan O’Toole was the first to finish the gruelling 27km Coastal Track section of the Michael Tynan Memorial Challenge.
At 73, Mr O’Toole was the oldest person to take up the challenge and certainly the fittest. He was first over the line at all three checkpoints – Garie, Wattamolla and ferry wharf finish line.

The youngest walker, 12-year-old Georgie Greig, finished among the top 20 walkers less than an hour behind Mr O’Toole.

Walking and running the Coastal Track is nothing new for Mr O’Toole, a regular with Billy’s Bushies, a Saturday morning institution among Sutherland Shire’s running fraternity. Having a thick hide and a sense of humour are necessities for membership in the Bushies and Mr O’Toole has both in spades.

A porter at St George Hospital, where he picks up and delivers cancer patients to their chemotherapy appointments, Mr O’Toole signed up to raise money for St George and Sutherland Medical Research Foundation and to get in a bit of training for an even bigger challenge next weekend, the 4 Peaks Alpine Climb at Bright, Victoria.

State MP for Cronulla and Minister for the Environment Mark Speakman said, “the Michael Tynan Memorial Challenge both commemorates a great advocate for the shire and promotes one of the great walks of the world which is right on Sydney’s doorstep. The Coastal Track has enormous tourist potential and the $9million the State Government is spending to upgrade the track will help protect it from erosion and sustain the level of visitation, which is estimated at about 75,000 people every year.’’

The walkers set off about 7am on Saturday and the first three walkers crossed the finish line in just over six hours and the last in just over eight.

On Sunday morning they regrouped at Dunningham Park for breakfast and the walk to Westfield Miranda and Hazelhurst Regional Art Gallery where they pressed hand prints into canvas for a painting which will be auctioned on November 18 at the joint Tynan Motors 50th anniversary in business and SSMRF fundraising dinner.

A highlight of the rest stop was Sharks Captain Paul Gallen, who arrived bearing Rugby League’s most cherished prize, the Provan-Summons Trophy. After stops at Tynan dealerships at Kirrawee and Sutherland the walkers headed over the Captain Cook Bridge to the Novotel Brighton Beach Hotel, where they dispersed, perhaps to do it all again next year.

Cancer survivor Rob Stanley-Jones was keen to do the walk again next year.  ‘’I can’t say enough about what an exciting event this was. I have met some wonderful people today, all raising money for the greatest cause in the world – medical research which helps keep us alive. I met people who were beneficiaries of this research. I want to congratulate Madeline Tynan for her seamless organisation. I’ll be doing it again next year,’’ Mr Stanley-Jones said.

“It is so important to engage the community in developing medical research in our hospitals. We need people to be behind us and this activity has been a triumph of community engagement”, said Foundation Chairman Professor John Edmonds.

Two other parts of the Challenge included a canoe race from Wollongong Harbour to Bundeena and a car rally.

St.George Bank staged a movie night at the end of the first day at Southern Districts football ground, with walkers sleeping in tents on the field before setting off on the Shire walk in the morning.

The event was proudly supported by major sponsors the Leader, Illawarra Mercury, Optus, St George Bank and University of Wollongong.

“It is so important to engage the community in developing medical research in our hospital. We need people to be behind us and this activity has been a triumph of community engagement”, said Foundation Chairman Professor John Edmonds.


Charity Ball


Lock in the date: Friday 18th November

The exquisite venue is the Four Points by Sheraton, Sydney Darling Harbour.

We are very excited to announce that our Annual Foundation Dinner will be held in conjunction with Tynan Motor Group 50th Anniversary Charity Ball celebrating the life and achievements of Michael Tynan while giving back to medical research – an exclusive event not to be missed!

This élite event will bring together the A list of corporate invitees and VIPs within the St George & Sutherland Shire community and beyond, with jaw-dropping entertainment and culinary delights.

We have auction and raffle prizes including a Jeep Grand Cherokee, Hoyts Private Cinema, Flight Centre travel through Asia, Suzuki Australia, 4 Nights at the world famous Emirates Palace Hotel, Dining Voucher for Rockpool and Catalina Restaurants, Tynan Motors Travel packs, and Premiership winning Shark’s football boots for your memorabilia wall. Our live auction will be organised and run by David Greig, McGrath Sutherland Shire and team.
This special night is proudly brought to you by Tynan Motor Group and supported by our sponsors on the night.

With an impressive line-up of entertainment and an evening of glitz and glamour, the quality of this high-end event will reflect the brand value of Tynan Motors Group and their partners.

The venue will provide an iconic location to celebrate Tynan Motors 50th anniversary. The night will be exciting and engaging and will also pay tribute to Michael Tynan and his many contributions to his community.

Tickets are now on sale and are priced at $500 per person, or $5,000 for a table of ten. Book tickets or a table here

If you would like to Sponsor or donate a prize, please email us at   

All proceeds from the night will go to SSMRF in support of medical research.

Our major sponsors are St George Private Hospital, Optus, and Fiat Chrysler Jeep.

Kogarah Lions Roaring Success at Hollywood Dinner Dance


On the 15th October 2016 much fun and laughter filled the air at the Georges River 16ft Sailing Club where the Lion’s Club of Kogarah held its Hollywood themed Dinner Dance.

As one of the chosen charities, SSMRF was proud to support this amazing event where much needed funds were raised for medical research in the St George and Sutherland hospitals.

“We are always happy to support SSMRF in their role to support researchers in the wonderful work that they do” said Sue Baker, President of Kogarah Lions.

Medical research gives our doctors access to the latest breakthroughs and allows them to practice medicine that is at the forefront of innovative care. Without medical research medicine stands still. To donate to medical research click here

A special Thank You to Sue Baker for her commitment to SSMRF and Medical Research and to Kogarah Lions!

Kidney Research in the Local Hospital


Associate Professor Ivor Katz is a Nephrologist and Senior Staff Specialist at St George Hospital in the Department of Renal Medicine, Director of Physician Education at St George Hospital, and Conjoint Associate Professor at the University of New South Wales which involves him directly in medical education.

His research and interest focuses on Health Systems and Management of Chronic Disease and in particular Chronic Kidney Disease. His interest lies in linking primary care specialists and hospital specialists using unique models of care and web based technology.

He has served on the National Kidney Foundation of South Africa, International Federation of Kidney Foundations and is currently involved in the Kidney Check Australia Taskforce (KCAT) which is part of Kidney Health Australia.

Research: ’Improving nephrology service delivery – Accessing the specialist’


The increased prevalence of chronic kidney disease (CKD) is straining the medical workforce and healthcare budget. To improve efficiency, patients require streamlined access to renal and general practice specialist advice.


The aim of the research was to profile general practitioner (GP) referrals for patients with CKD and compare those referrals to national guidelines.


A retrospective analysis of 200 randomly selected outpatient referrals to the renal service was conducted at St George Hospital, Sydney, between 2008 and 2011. These referrals were compared against national referral guidelines.


Declining renal function accounted for the majority (44%; n = 78) of referrals, while advice regarding hypertension management contributed to a further 21% (n = 38) of referrals. Fifteen per cent (n = 27) of patients were referred back to their GP after one visit, while 40% (n = 72) required follow-up beyond 12 months. When compared with the National nephrology referral guidelines, 25% (n = 42) of referrals did not meet the criteria.


Access to renal specialists may be difficult because of bottlenecks in the public clinic, frustrating all parties concerned. If an alternative, more integrated, possibly web-based CKD support service existed, some formal reviews could be bypassed. This study provided preliminary data supporting the development of such a service, and simultaneously providing streamlined support to the GP and relieving pressure on hospital clinics.

It is well recognised that dialysis is a costly treatment.1 On fiscal and quality-of-life bases, it is preferable for dialysis to be delayed or, if possible, averted altogether. Integrated care is an essential requirement for optimising the management of chronic kidney disease (CKD). Identifying at what point in the disease process various interventions will have the greatest management impact is essential.



Matt Alderton and the Team at B-xponential continue to provide great support for SSMRF. The Foundation was once again the Charity Partner for B-xponential – Australia’s Premier Business Event on Wednesday 26th October 2016.

B-xponential provided the major raffle prize at the event – a 12-month Business for Life program, helping business owners scale and grow their businesses, valued at nearly $12,000. The prize was won by Paul Morrison from Tickets Please. In addition, there were 5 other winners of sets of books from the amazing presenters – Luke S Kennedy, Naomi Simson, Matt Alderton and John McGrath.

Matt’s B-x organisation has recently nominated the Foundation as Charity Partner across all BxNetworking for Business groups in Sydney and Canberra, enabling SSMRF to reach out to the wider community with information about the vital research undertaken at our local hospitals.

You can find out more about BxNetworking here

2NBC 90.1FM and Paul McGrath


In a first for the Foundation’s St.George Bank Beachside Dash, Radio 2NBC 90.1FM broadcast their Sunday Sports Wrap program live from the event this year. Terry Booker, Stuart Maurice and Leisa Johns were on-air live from 7-9am, while Station Manager and breakfast presenter Paul McGrath provided M.C. duties for the Dash.

A perfect example of local community organisations providing mutual support, the contribution from the 2NBC team added plenty of colour to the event and certainly attracted the attention of the large crowd. 2NBC lived up to their slogan “Live and Local”.

Sunday Sports Wrap is broadcast live every Sunday morning from 7-9am on 90.1FM. The program covers all aspects of local sport in the St George and Inner West and has a large regular army of loyal listeners.

Our Amazing Volunteers

A HUGE Shout Out to all our amazing volunteers for their support of the Michael Tynan Memorial Challenge.

Their positive energy and willingness to jump in and help wherever and whenever it was required – nothing was too much trouble – was the reason why it was such a successful event!

A special mention also to Lugarno Lions and Cronulla Lions for their ongoing support.

With thanks to Tynan Motors you can support SSMRF and be in the draw to win a Suzuki Swift, click below for more details to to enter the draw.


You may also like

Jonathan Brown's journey with early onset dementia: Embracing change and finding hope

Jonathan Brown's journey with early onset dementia: Embracing change and finding hope

Jonathan Brown was diagnosed with early onset dementia at the age of 55. His story is one of gradual realisation,…
Honouring Giuseppe Ferlaino: A legacy of hope and research

Honouring Giuseppe Ferlaino: A legacy of hope and research

Giovanna Ferlaino’s father, the late Giuseppe Ferlaino, was an exceptional man – an outstanding father, husband and role model. His…
Unlocking hope through the microbiome: Dr Michelle Fitzmaurice's journey in dementia research

Unlocking hope through the microbiome: Dr Michelle Fitzmaurice's journey in dementia research

Dr Michelle Fitzmaurice, a postdoctoral researcher at the UNSW Microbiome Research Centre, is at the forefront of microbiome research. She…