Spreading the NAVIGATE word

Visiting Government House

Fiona and I were fortunate to attend Victoria’s Government House as part of the 70th anniversary celebrations for the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre.

We were really excited to meet Her Excellency, the Governor, Linda Dessau. We grabbed the chance to tell her about the NAVIGATE trial for men with low-risk prostate cancer. The Governor was kind enough to let us bend her ear on the subject and even have a photo taken with her.

Alan White with Victorian Governor, Linda Dessau, and Fiona White
Victoria’s Governor, Her Excellency Linda Dessau, with Alan White and Fiona White.

Men’s Sheds in Victoria

I have been doubly lucky on the social engagement front recently, because I also attended a Government House function last week in honour of the Men’s Shed movement in Victoria. It was great to see so many men (and their partners) receive acknowledgement for their support of this state’s Men’s Sheds.

9th Annual Victorian Healthcare Week Expo

On Tuesday, I attended the 9th Annual Victorian Healthcare Week Expo as a presenter. My presentation of Wounding the Soul was part of the patient experience stream. This talk addresses the profound emotional, physical and mental impact of prostate cancer surgery on men and their partners. I also took the chance to stress the importance of the NAVIGATE trial for men who have recently been diagnosed with low-risk prostate cancer.

Associate Professor Munjed Al Muderis delivered a presentation on his current work with amputees. It was great to meet him. We spoke briefly about prostate cancer and he kindly allowed me to have a photo taken with him. I find him and his work so inspiring.

Alan White with Associate Professor Munjed Al Muderis at the 9th Victorian HealthCare Week, 23 July 2019
Alan White with Associate Professor Munjed Al Muderis.
Awardee Alan White, with Professor Penny Schofield (L) and Natalie Richards (R)

Volunteer Awards 2019 – A win for NAVIGATE

Victorian Public Health Volunteer Awards

An exciting event happened last Friday afternoon at the MCG. I was sitting in the Members’ Dining Room with 250 other volunteers and their families. It was wet and windy outside as the Victorian Minister for Health, Jenny Mikakos, presented the 2019 Local Health Volunteer Awards.

Outstanding Achievement by a Volunteer: Improving Public Healthcare

The NAVIGATE team, Professor Penny Schofield (Principal Investigator) and Natalie Richards (Project Manager), were there to see me receive the Award for Outstanding Achievement by a Volunteer: Improving Public Healthcare. Oh, and my wife was there too. I’m not sure who was the most excited!

NAVIGATE team at MCG for Victorian Local Health Volunteer Awards 2019
(L to R) Professor Penny Schofield, Alan White, and Natalie Richards.

Overall, six categories of volunteer achievement were recognised. I felt privileged to have been nominated in the first place, let alone to go on and receive the final Award for my category. It was great to see the number of entries and the outstanding quality of the volunteers who were nominated from across Victoria.

Why did I win?

My Award recognised the last seven years that I have spent working with the NAVIGATE. I have been with the team from its very inception to its current status – clinical trial phase. NAVIGATE is now actively recruiting participants to become involved with the trial, which I believe will lead to a game-changing tool for men diagnosed with low-risk prostate cancer.

Special thanks to Natalie Richards for her PR video (above) – you can certainly see the excitement and enthusiasm of our team! And congratulations to all the other volunteers who were nominated for this year’s Awards. Public health in Victoria is all the better for their involvement.

Webinar: Adjusting to the new normal

Free Webinar

This coming Wednesday (3rd of April), I will be the guest on a live webinar broadcast by Victoria Cullen, Sexual Function Specialist.

Victoria Cullen talking about life after prostate cancer surgery
Victoria Cullen, Sexual Function Specialist

The webinar will start at 7:00pm (AEDT) and you can register to watch (or participate) via the link below.

Button to register for free webinar on life after prostate cancer surgery

Victoria and I will be discussing life after prostate cancer surgery, ranging across issues such as:-

  • the physical, emotional and psychological impacts of surgery;
  • how prostate cancer surgery can affect relationships;
  • sex and intimacy after prostate cancer surgery;
  • incontinence and erectile dysfunction.

The webinar is free and we would love you to join us with your questions and comments.  You can, of course, just sit back and watch without joining in – it’s all up to you.

If you’d like to check out our promo video on YouTube, click on the link below.

Check out the promo video on YouTube

AMHF 2018 National Men’s Health Gathering

2018 National Men’s Health Gathering

Navigate Decision Aid Presentation

AMHF Men's Health Gathering 2018 - Alan White delivering presentation on Navigate Decision Aid for Low Risk Prostate Cancer
Presenting the Navigate Decision Aid Clinical Trial at the AMHF 2018 Men’s Health Gathering

I felt privileged to present on behalf of Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre at the Australian Men’s Health Forum (AMHF) 2018 National Men’s Health Gathering in Parramatta earlier this week.

The presentation was about the clinical trial currently running for the Navigate Decision Aid for men diagnosed with low risk prostate cancer.  The trial is being conducted by Peter Mac, in conjunction with Swinburne University.

Australia-wide Clinical Trial

The trial is Australia-wide and is open to men who have been diagnosed within the last three months and who are still considering their treatment options (including active surveillance).

No referral is necessary and partners can be involved too.  For further information, please contact Project Manager, Natalie Richards on 03 8559 7453 or email

Great gathering at Novotel, Parramatta

There was an excellent turnout to the AMHF 2018 Men’s Health Gathering.  Over the three days of the conference, I was able to attend presentations by a wide variety of men and organisations.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander representation was strong, with the likes of Mick Adams, Professor Tom Calma AO, and Romlie Mokak.

I particularly enjoyed listening to Alan Philp, from the Commonwealth Department of Health.  Alan’s interesting back-story included his training as a nurse and midwife!

Raising awareness about Men’s Health

It was very pleasing to see so many men (and women) working at the grass roots level to raise awareness of men’s health issues – especially in regional and rural areas.

A big thank you to the organisers – the 9th National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Male Health Convention Steering Committee and the 2018 National Men’s Health Gathering Steering Committee.

Successful prostate cancer event held in Hampton

Successful Information Event

Despite the bleak weather last Wednesday night, a good crowd turned out to hear four keynote speakers discuss Prostate Cancer and You.

As part of International Men’s Health Week, Bayside-Kingston Prostate Cancer Support Group organised this special information evening at the Hampton Senior Citizens’ Centre.

Generous sponsorship was provided by the Lions Club (Sandringham), Bendigo Community Bank (Dingley) and Hocking Stuart.  Attendees enjoyed delicious finger food (thanks to the caterers, Party Food Melbourne).  Coffee and tea were kindly supplied by members of the local Country Women’s Association.

The venue was provided by the Bayside City Council, and Brighton Bayside Life Activities Club supplied the sound system.

Keynote Speakers

The first speaker for the night was Dr Daniel Moon, urologist, who fielded many questions from audience members during his presentation.  Daniel covered such issues as PSA testing, the use of MRI-guided biopsies, decision making and the range of treatments currently in use.

Sarah Rudd, continence physiotherapist, spoke next.  She reviewed the male anatomy to explain its complexity and the importance of properly performed pelvic floor exercises, both before and after treatment.  Sarah made sure that we were all awake by getting us out of our seats to do the “nuts to guts” pelvic floor exercise.

After a short break, David Gray, urology nurse practitioner, spoke about his role in assisting men and their partners throughout the prostate cancer journey.  David also mentioned his work at the Australian Prostate Centre in North Melbourne, and the wide range of services that they have available for men (and women).

The final speaker was Kate Williams, accredited exercise physiologist.  Kate discussed the importance of physical activity, not only for general health, but especially in dealing with treatment side-effects such as fatigue, weight gain, muscle loss, depression and anxiety.  She talked about recent studies that have confirmed the importance of appropriate exercise.

Audience at Hampton Senior Citizens' Centre for Prostate Cancer and You Information Evening
Audience building up before the event – Prostate Cancer and You

Importance of Collaboration

All speakers were extremely generous with their time and expertise.  The broad range of questions from the audience reflected the need for collaboration and cross-referral between various arms of the medical fraternity and allied health.

Speakers David Gray and Kate Williams, with Alan White
Speakers David Gray and Kate Williams, with Alan White, at Hampton Senior Citizens’ Centre, Wednesday 13 June 2018

Showbags full of information were provided to all attendees.  These bags included booklets and brochures from:-

The speakers also provided information that was included in the bags.

Special Thanks

This event could not have succeeded without the considerable help from members of the Bayside-Kingston Prostate Cancer Support Group.  In particular, I would like to thank Tony Carr (who instigated the event), Vern Smith (and his wife, Barbara), Rocky Restaino (and his wife, Lucy).

My sincere thanks to all four of our wonderful guest speakers, without whom the evening would never have happened.

If you couldn’t attend this event and you’d like to receive some of the information that was included in the showbags, please contact me by email or by phone to 0407 617 800.

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