Meet Tanya Wells and the team at MIOG

MIOG is a team of practitioners working collaboratively rather than as isolated independent practitioners, helping patients with cancer in Melbourne and across Australia. This facilitates a cohesive and integrated planning process that is unique in oncology healthcare.

All MIOG practitioners meet weekly to discuss patient progress and outcomes in order to provide optimal ongoing treatment support. Tanya Wells has travelled internationally many times in order to visit Integrative Oncology clinics and hospitals to determine the most appropriate organisational structure for sustainable and effective patient care. The most sustainable care protocols occur when all practitioners (including conventional as well as natural and complementary medicine) work as a cohesive, multi-disciplinary team to discuss and contribute to the care of patients enrolled in treatment. This is what we call Integrative Medicine for cancer.

The MIOG clinic itself provides a visually pleasing blend of clinical practice and comfort, with a spacious chill-out zone, informal areas and a relaxing ambiance. Juices, snacks and teas are all provided for MIOG patients and their carers. The clinic provides full disabled access and facilities. A range of courses and group activities are also offered, including meditation/mindfulness, yoga, and monthly 'food as medicine' cooking workshops.

Tanya Wells, MIOG Founder, Lead Clinician and Oncology Naturopath, and her team have been working with patients with cancer for years, and they understand the challenges patients face on a physical, emotional and psychological level. MIOG is a highly respected evidence-based clinic for people who want to combine standard oncology treatments with evidence-based integrative approaches.

Meet the team who care and support you to be as healthy as possible

Tanya Wells

Lead Clinician and Founder
GCHPE, B.Sc., B.H.Sc (Naturopathy), Member NHAA AIMA COSA SIO ASCO
LinkedIn Profile

As a qualified Naturopath, Tanya has been practicing for over 20 years.

Tanya's special interest and expertise is in the research and development of Integrative Oncology Programs: utilising the best Evidence Based Complementary Therapies to work in conjunction with conventional treatments such as surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy. She has visited and worked in Integrative Oncology Hospitals in Europe and Asia where she collaborated with clinicians at multiple Integrative Oncology Hospitals. In 2018 she visited Integrative Oncology Clinics in China, Thailand and Japan, and will travel to the USA in October 2019. These international clinic experiences allow Tanya to share information with other practitioners so that the MIOG Integrative Oncology programs are continually developing.

Tanya is an experienced lecturer at tertiary level, primarily focussing on Clinical Supervision/Assessment and her specialist subject 'Integrative Pharmacology'. She also lectures Naturopathy students in Herbal Medicine and Nutrition. As a tutor for the Faculty of Medicine at Monash University, Tanya has taught first and third year medical students in areas of Health Enhancement (specifically meditation, nutrition, stress management and exercise) and Community Health Promotion.

Tanya has written and presented a range of 'Drug-Herb/Nutrient Interactions' seminars for Medical, Pharmacy and Nursing Professionals in Integrative Medicine. She is a contributing author to a range of clinical textbooks.

"Tanya immediately puts you at ease, even though your world has turned upside down she makes you feel like there's hope. She explains everything better than the oncologists and doctors and gives great detail on the treatment plan and why. The treatment plan that Tanya builds is very helpful too." Patient

"From the first appointment I found Tanya to be a great listener and very empathic. She had a wealth of knowledge for me to tap into. The plan she made up for me made sense and explained why for every supplement inclusion, dietary inclusion/avoidance/reduction. She has taken on board all my ups and downs and allows me to have my moments of crying etc. I feel comfortable with her." Patient

"Tanya has helped with supplements, dietary advice and communicating with oncologist specialists to help us make more informed decisions and choices. Her medical knowledge and background give us confidence to make our own choices without the persistent (and sometimes bullying) advice to follow mainstream strategies." Patient


Dr. Shala Rasouli

Integrative Medicine Naturopath, Hyperthermia Technician
(Doctor of Philosophy) Ph.D. (Cancer Immunology), B.H.Sc. (Naturopathy), Cert. IV Bowen Therapy, Reiki Practitioner
Member ATMS

Shala is a highly experienced Naturopath, with a passion for integrative and herbal medicine, nutrition and cancer support. She is particularly interested in hormonally driven cancers, including prostate, breast and thyroid cancers, as well as lung cancer and melanomas. Her approach is thorough, and she creates comprehensive treatment plans based on the most current research and evidence in Integrative Oncology.

Shala also treats general naturopathy patients (ie non oncology), and is very experienced in complex hormonal issues, autoimmune conditions, digestive and cardiovascular health.

Prior to her work at MIOG as a Naturopath in Carnegie, Melbourne, Shala was a  highly accomplished senior scientist and immunologist. She finished her PhD in immunology and melanoma cancer research in 2002 at Monash University, Melbourne, and completed 10 years of postdoctoral fellowship in Portland, Oregon, USA. As an author, Shala has published scientific articles in a number of nationally and internationally recognised journals.

In 2012, upon returning to Australia, Shala sought to start her second Bachelor Degree in Health Science (Naturopathy) at the Endeavour College of Natural Health. 

Shala is also the Lead Researcher at MIOG and balances clinical practice with consistent development of our extensive database of evidence based research. She is dedicated to the comprehensive analysis of supportive interactions and research for patients with cancer.


Jane Fletcher

Health Psychologist
B.A., Grad Dip A. Psych., MAPS CHP

Jane is a health psychologist with over 15 years experience working with individuals with cancer.

Jane continues to offer evidence based intervention to individuals, couples and families at all stages of the cancer experience from diagnosis to bereavement. She has extensive experience using cognitive-behavioural therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy, a range of existential approaches and mindfulness based interventions.

She is qualified in medical hypnosis and uses this for the treatment of cancer related sleep disorders, and phobic and conditioned responses.

She has a special interest in sexuality and is experienced in a range of specific interventions for the psycho-sexual issues associated with a cancer diagnosis. Special interests include breast, gynaecological, prostate, bowel, lung and haematological cancers.

Jane is passionate about offering care to those diagnosed with less common cancers. She also works with those who have tested gene positive for cancer and who may require prophylactic surgical intervention.

Jane speaks widely, both locally and internationally, to peers and those living with a cancer diagnosis, and she holds adjunct appointments with Monash University and the Szalmuk Family Psycho-oncology Unit.


Belinda Astl

Psychologist
B.A., Grad Dip Counselling Psych., MAPS

Belinda is a psychologist with over 25 years experience in health and organisational settings. Adjustment to cancer has been a career long interest from researching mental adjustment to cancer during university through to contributing to the development of the Breacan (now Counterpart) peer volunteer support program. Belinda's work has tracked the patient advocacy and empowerment evolution and she is keen to support individuals to be active in their health choices.

Belinda has extensive experience in a range of psychological interventions and is fascinated by the
intersection of cognitive behavioural psychology and Buddhist philosophy. Evidence of the efficacy of
meditation and self-compassion when dealing with trauma, stress and pain is central to her practice as is her use of Narrative and Family Systems Therapy when working with individuals, couples and families to help understand complex relationships.

Belinda Astl psychologist for patients with cancer

Christine Lee

Acupuncturist
B.A., B.App.Sci. (ChMed / HumBio)

Christine is an APHRA registered Acupuncturist and Chinese Medicine Practitioner. She received her initial training at RMIT in Melbourne and completed her internship at Jiangsu Provincial Hospital of TCM in Nanjing, China.

In practice for over 10 years, Christine has a long history of working collaboratively with other practitioners to provide symptom relief and general support for cancer patients. She has a special interest in treating hot flashes, pain conditions, peripheral neuropathy, and nausea and vomiting.

Christine's approach is patient focused and practical. She offers evidence-based acupuncture to assist in symptom relief and general well-being. Her focus is to first reduce pain and discomfort and then to improve sleep quality and the ability to relax. Working from a holistic perspective, her clinical experience is to promote her patient's immune function, healing and physiological homeostasis.

Christine utilises a variety of acupuncture techniques to achieve best outcomes. She has pursued further training in ear acupuncture, scalp acupuncture, Balance Method and Tung's acupuncture. She also uses electro acupuncture, laser acupuncture and heat therapy where appropriate. She is avidly interested in innovative techniques supported by evidence.

Christine has long been an advocate of integrating acupuncture into community health care. She works alongside specialists, general practitioners and other allied health practitioners, and she regularly presents educational seminars on acupuncture. She was a co-founder of non-profit Prickle Community Acupuncture and the ASCR Acupuncture Project.

Integrative Oncology Acupuncturist Melbourne

Vivian Klaver

Nutritionist
BHsc (Nut Med), B(Psych, Mngmt/Mkt)

Viv graduated with a Bachelor of Nutritional Medicine in 2007, following a degree in Psychology and Business and a few years work in the corporate world. She has always been passionate about helping people live healthier lives, so a career change into Complementary Medicine was a natural progression.

In Oncology, Viv is highly knowledgeable about beneficial dietary habits, food as medicine, and evidence-based functional foods. She assesses which kind of approach is beneficial from person to person. Questions often arise around ketogenic diets, intermittent fasting, veganism, juice fasting and more, so Viv will be able to help you navigate the conflicting information and create a plan that will best suit your health and your lifestyle.

You may have seen her face at reception, as Viv was acting Practice Manager for the last year. She also has two children whom she loves teaching all about wholefoods and cooking.

Oncology Nutritionist Vivian Klaver

Lauren Young

Exercise Physiologist
BESS, MClinExPhys, Member ESSA, ACSM

Lauren is an Accredited Exercise Physiologist with a Masters in Clinical Exercise Physiology and a specialisation from the American College of Sports Medicine in Cancer. Over the past three years, Lauren has worked in private practice, prescribing exercise for a wide range of conditions and has previous experience working in both public and private hospitals.  Lauren is an outstanding Exercise Physiologist who is passionate about providing treatment that is client-centred and improves the quality of life of the individual.

When away from work, Lauren keeps active through running and rock climbing and spends her downtime with family and close friends.

Lauren's areas of special interest include:

·         Cancer (all tumour streams)

·         Cardiometabolic Disease (diabetes, cardiovascular disease)

·         Persistent Pain and Fatigue

Exercise Physiologist specialising in Cancer

Monika Siennicka

Massage Therapist
Dip Rem Massage, MLD, OM2, Member ESSA, ACSM

Monika has treated many musculoskeletal conditions since becoming a certified Remedial Massage Therapist in 2007, with many patients staying with her for over a decade. She has further training in Manual Lymphatic Drainage, and due to her special interest and the growing demand in oncology care, she added the Oncology Massage 2 (OM2) qualification to her toolbelt. 

During her treatments, Monika uses various techniques to help restore a body's balance: myofacial releases, trigger point therapy, stretching, relaxation techniques, joint mobilization, cupping and the gentle techniques of lymphatic massage and OM,  to name a few. An important part of her approach is to communicate with clients to tailor best possible treatment plan that is both therapeutic and relaxing. She combines her extensive clinical experience and her anatomy knowledge with a deep sense of intuition.

Remedial Massage Carnegie and Oncology Massage Melbourne

Gigi

Therapy Poodle


Companion animals bring comfort and joy to the lives of many patients, and research shows that Therapy Dogs can reduce stress levels, blood pressure, tension and fatigue. Therapy Dogs enhance overall wellbeing, promote quicker recovery from illness and help patients manage stressful situations.

MIOG is committed to creating a supportive and calming environment for our patients, and Gigi is an integral part of our support team. Gigi is a happy friendly Poodle whose tail is constantly wagging with joy and excitement - you can't help but feel better when she's around. Gigi is available for a chat, offers a fluffy paw to shake, and a floppy ear to listen to our patients concerns. She wanders through the clinic spreading love and sits in on consultations with Tanya.

Please note: Gigi is a Toy Poodle, so she is hypo-allergenic, she doesn't smell or shed hair - so she's safe for patients with allergies. She is 14 years old (that's 98 in human years!) - so once she's said hello and had a pat, she'll spend most of the consultation snoring in the corner.

Therapy dog Gigi the toy poodle

Whatever your oncology journey - our passion, empathy and experience will ensure that you have a caring support network and absolute expertise in a safe nurturing environment

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Latest News

Cancer Related Fatigue

Posted by Lauren Young on 12 September 2019
Of all the side effects of cancer treatment, some expected, some unexpected, cancer related fatigue is the most com...

What Clients say

Tanya has helped with supplements, dietary advice and communicating with oncologist specialists to help us make more informed decisions and choices. Her medical knowledge and background give us con...

- Jan

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MIOG offers evidence-based Complementary Medicines to patients with cancer: before, during and after medical treatment. MIOG staff are not Medical Oncologists. MIOG recommends that patients with cancer consult a Medical Oncologist for appropriate support.


 

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