Breaking news

Mountain Gate Primary School and Shades of Pink recently held a fabulous fundraising day.

Sarah Allan daughter and principal edited 2Students and teachers alike embraced the day by coming dressed in pink or wearing a touch of pink in support of their local community and those fighting breast cancer.

A morning tea was provided for parents who could attend, and this incredible event raised an amazing $1245.85 for the Eastern Health Breast and Cancer Centre, located at Maroondah Hospital.

The event was organised by Grace (pictured right with Winnie, left, and Mountain Gate Principal Cheryl Sampson, behind).

My mum raises money for the Eastern Health Breast Cancer Centre and I love helping her. This year I am on Junior School Council with my friend Winnie.

"We wanted to help raise money so we helped the Mountain Gate PTFA to have a pink day at school. We dressed in pink, did a colouring competition and a raffle. The parents had a special morning tea.

"We raised lots of money and it was great to have our own event to help people with breast cancer.”

If you or any of your friends and family would like to organise a day or special event to raise funds for Eastern Health Breast and Cancer Centre or any other Eastern Health location, please email

There are so many wonderful ways to get involved and opportunities to catch up and unite for a purpose with loved ones, get in touch now and see how you can help your community.

Thank you to Grace, Winnie, Shades of Pink and Mountain Gate Primary School.

IMG 0683 cropWith the generous support of Blackburn South Community Bank Branch, Ward 9.1 at Box Hill Hospital was able to purchase two additional vital signs monitors during the peak of the COVID-19 challenge in 2020.

“Delivering great patient care is of utmost importance to Eastern Health,” explains Tiarne, Nurse Unit Manager, Ward 9.1 Box Hill Hospital.

“The use of vital signs monitors greatly assists nursing and medical staff in identifying changes in a patient’s condition,” she explains.

This equipment was first used during the peak of the pandemic in Melbourne, when Ward 9.1 was converted to a COVID ward.

“Having additional monitors meant that patients who were isolated were able to have access to their own equipment.
This facilitated was less sharing of equipment amongst potentially infectious patients,” explains Tiarne.

Although the number of COVID cases seen through our organisation has dramatically decreased over the last few months, Ward 9.1 is now predominantly an acute general medicine ward.

“The two vital signs monitors continue to be used to deliver care to our most vulnerable population” explains Tiarne.

Eastern Health, and in particular the staff on 9.1, are incredibly grateful to Bendigo Bank for their generous donation during this very challenging time.

The Eastern Health Foundation office reopens on Monday 4 January.

The office will be closed from 5.00pm on Friday 18 December and will reopen at 9.00am on Monday 4 January 2020.

Donations can be made at any time online or by calling 03 9895 4608.

We greatly appreciate your suppport this year and wish you a safe, healthy and happy festive season.

We look forward to seeing you in 2021.


Donor support for patients, doctors, nurses and other care teams at Eastern Health in 2020 has been so inspiring!

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Like you, we are looking forward to a (hopefully) COVID-free Christmas and time with loved ones after a very challenging year.

Christmas is often a time of gratitude and reflection. This year, even more so.

That’s why we want to say thank you. We want you to know how much of a difference you have made this year.

Staff at our hospitals all appreciate your kindness, care and cheerleading during such a difficult year.

This year, 5,525 inspiring donors gave to save lives and improve healthcare for thousands of hospital patients.

You have made an amazing contribution to local healthcare in 2020!

You helped…

✓ Purchase lifesaving equipment for our wards

✓ Discover new treatments thanks to medical research

✓ Give nurses the chance to shine with education scholarships

We could not have done this without you.

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We are so touched by your support. It means the world to us, especially this year.

You can read more about how your gift helped this year in the WeThankU newsletter.

It’s one way we can thank you for your amazing support and show how you and other kind donors have saved lives and improved healthcare for patients.

Thank you for supporting us when we needed you the most.

If you have any questions about how your gift is making a difference, you are always welcome to contact Eastern Health Foundation on 03 9895 4608.

Thank you very much for your support in 2020.

Please visit to find out more about our WeThankU campaign or make a donation.

Best wishes for a happy and safe Christmas with your loved ones.


Previous webinars



Lions Club of Blackburn support medical imaging research with funding for anthropormorphic phantom

Brandon and anthropomorphic phantomAn exciting new research project can now commence in Eastern Health's Medical Imaging department thanks to the arrival of an anthropomorphic phantom kindly funded by the hard working members of the Lions Club of Blackburn.

Anthropomorphic phantoms (pictured being held by Brandon, right) are objects that can be used to simulate the human anatomy.

"They are designed to have similar tissue characteristics to normal biological organisms", explains Paul Kelly, Medical Imaging Tutor, Eastern Health. "We use phantoms to develop different imaging techniques and test x-ray exposure doses".

Anthropomorphic phantoms are invaluable for research as they provide true anatomical detail when x-rayed, but can be subjected to multiple exposures without risk.

"Current standards and practices are based on the premise that any radiation dose, no matter how small, could result in detrimental health effects such as cancer or genetic damage."

As registered users of x-ray (ionising) radiation, Medical Imaging Technologists are mandated to keep the x-ray radiation levels to a minimum using the principles of ALARA (As Low as Reasonably Allowable) whilst maintaining the diagnostic quality.

"The production of the x-ray image is based on the balance between the amount of radiation produced over time, and the degree of penetration required to effectively pass through the tissue and bone", explains Paul.

It is known that an increase in penetration reduces the amounts of radiation required, but has also an effect on the diagnostic quality of the x-ray image.

"With the advent of digital imaging and post processing enhancements, higher penetration values can be achieved requiring less radiation to produce the x-ray image", says Paul.

With thanks to the Lions Club of Blackburn, this research project will follow a 2017 investigation on the theoretical possibility of reducing patient dose for extremity imaging.

"The aim is to establish the lowest possible threshold in radiation exposure that still maintains the diagnostic quality", says Paul.

"We hope that the findings will lead to significant reductions in x-ray radiation exposure for consumers of medical imaging at Eastern Health and beyond.

"In future we hope to be able to extend the research to include all regions of the anatomy", says Paul.

With the generous support of philanthropists, Eastern Health Foundation and the Learning and Teaching directorate are proud to support staff who wish to continue their learning throughout their career.

This programs offers and opportunity for our clinical and non-clinical staff to secure a scholarship prior to commencing a program each year. 39 Scholarships were generously funded in 2020 from individuals, businesses and community groups invested in the development of a capable, responsive, diverse and supported workforce at Eastern Health.  

The program also has the potential to assist staff who may not have been able to consider undertaking further studies due to financial constraints.

Only with philanthropic support can Scholarships be offered to support further study in an accredited course that will enhance staff capability to perform their current role effectively, safely and efficiently.

The study undertaken could maintain or expand the staff member’s scope of practice or capability in relation to your current position at Eastern Health and may be clinical or non-clinical.

Scholarship program 2021

Eastern Health Foundation would like to extend our appreciation to our philanthropic Scholarship partners for 2021 including:

  • BankVic (Founding Partner)
  • 13cabs
  • Androgogic
  • Ego Pharmaceuticals
  • Glyde Metal
  • Victorian Association of Argos Orestikon and Districts

Thank you for making these Scholarships possible.

Become a Scholarship partner

Eastern Health Staff Development Scholarships are only made possible through the generosity of individuals, community groups and businesses.

We invite you to join this emerging philanthropic group in supporting your local frontline health workers, both clinical and non-clinical.

Our patients are at the centre of everything we do. Your support will ensure excellent healthcare for the community we serve.

The scholarship program aims to support Eastern Health staff that are committed to their own professional development and understand that by increasing their skills, knowledge and expertise they are able to provide excellence in care that is both evidenced based and responsive.

The Eastern Health Staff Development Scholarship program also provides us an opportunity to recognise and give back to our people. With your help, they will be acknowledges for the essential role that they play as a frontline health worker.

To find out more about the Eastern Health Staff Development Scholarships program, please contact Jason Smith, Director, Eastern Health Foundation on 03 9895 4992, or 0467 730 607 or email

This is a fantastic opportunity to have a direct impact on health care in your local community.

You are inspiring our frontline medical teams! Thank you so much for your help.

(Chinese translation of thank you video)

Thank you

Recent support from our local community has meant the world to our frontline health workers over the last few months! Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

I am tremendously grateful for the gifts made to the Eastern Health Agility Response Fund.

Our community has shown my colleagues and I just how much they appreciate their frontline health workers.

When we launched the Agility Response Fund in March 2020, we didn’t know exactly what we would need. The goalposts were changing every day, sometimes multiple times a day.

Community support meant that my colleagues and I were able to respond quickly when we needed to purchase life-saving equipment.

Community help meant that we were able to connect patients with their families and prevent loneliness.

Community foresight meant that we were able to fund telemedicine initiatives for the future, to keep our patients safe at home.

Thank you.

Winter NewsYou can read more about how these gifts made a difference in the Winter edition of 'Because of You'.

A Chinese version is also available.

As you will read, 2,860 kind people generously donated $727,697 to the Eastern Health Agility Response Fund to 31 July 2020, directly supporting our frontline health workers.

Thank you for:

  • Two heart lung bypass machines in Intensive Care to take over the work of the heart or lungs when patients are critically ill
  • 16 vital signs monitors in our COVID-19 wards to provide 24/7 monitoring of heart rate and breathing function
  • Three video laryngoscopes in our Intensive Care Units and Emergency Departments to help doctors insert breathing tubes for patients who require ventilation
  • One rapid testing machine in our Pathology Laboratory to test for COVID-19 and influenza
  • Nine iPads to keep patients in touch with their families during visitor restrictions
  • Enhancement of our 'Virtual hospital ward' to provide healthcare services in the home

On behalf of everyone at Eastern Health, I extend my heartfelt appreciation to all of our donors.

Thank you for taking the time to support our frontline medical teams. Thank you for saving lives.

If you have any questions about how your gift is making a difference, please contact Eastern Health Foundation on 03 9895 4608.

Yours sincerely,

Dr John Dyett
Intensive Care Specialist at Eastern Health

PS There is still so much more we need to do as we battle the lasting effects of the second wave of COVID-19 in Victoria. The Eastern Health Agility Response Fund is an ongoing appeal. Please make a donation today.


Edition 17 Chief Commissioner T Bear 416x621In line with their mission to support Victorian hospitals, Blue Ribbon Foundation launched their COVID-19 appeal in March.

Supporters were asked to purchase a Constable T Bear or make a donation and nominate their local hospital.

The appeal supported 74 hospitals across the State, including Eastern Health sites! What an amazing contribution to the fight against COVID-19.

We are most grateful to Blue Ribbon Foundation for their ongoing support and partnership. This includes their newly formed Eastern Metro Branch.

Find out more about their commitment to remembering lives by saving others at

Turning Point has recently received a grant of $215,000 to support older adults in the Yarra Ranges, thanks to Gandel Philanthropy.

Close shot of patient holding hands with a carerDid you know that chronic pain affects one in three older adults, and it is estimated to be Australia’s third most costly health problem?

Many people living with chronic pain become dependent on prescribed opioid medication and research shows that this can be harmful in the long-term.

Social connection is recognised as a key ingredient to improving the quality of life for those suffering chronic pain, and an important step in reducing opioid dependency, but it is often difficult for health providers to address in the traditional clinical setting.

A new project, devised by Turning Point in partnership with Eastern Health Foundation, aims to tackle this challenge and it has been given a significant boost after being awarded a Major Grant from Gandel Philanthropy.

The Opioid Use and Pain, Addressing Loneliness in Mature Adults (OP-ALMA) project, is a pilot program targeting older adults in the Yarra Ranges with chronic pain and opioid dependence.

It is an innovative, world-first approach to the holistic management of pain and opioid dependence combined with well-being and quality of life in older adults.

The project will include a strong focus on mentoring and coaching health professionals in the region, to enhance their capacity to address social isolation.

Dr Shalini Arunogiri, an addiction psychiatrist at Turning Point, says the team is thrilled to receive this funding from one of Australia’s largest independent family philanthropic groups.

“As health providers we know that long-term use of some pain medications can be harmful to health. We want to help people get up and about, to connect with others in their community. This project gives us a real opportunity to make a difference”, says Dr Arunogiri.

Vedran Drakulic OAM, CEO of Gandel Philanthropy, says the project ticked all the boxes when considering grant recipients.

“Positive ageing is one of the key focus areas for Gandel Philanthropy. As such, partnering with Turning Point and Eastern Health to pilot this new approach to improving the health, wellbeing and quality of life of older people experiencing chronic pain, addiction and loneliness was a natural fit.

The project is embedded in community, offers tailored social and community activities and involves consumers, carers and health healthcare professionals. It is clearly a comprehensive, well-structured approach and it is strongly aligned to our emphasis on promoting healthy ageing within communities,” says Mr Drakulic.

Turning Point will collaborate with the peak body for older adults, COTA Vic, and other key community partners in the Yarra Ranges region as well as with Eastern Health’s Pain Management Services, in delivering this project.

Thank you Gandel Philanthropy!

About Turning Point

Turning Point is a national addiction treatment centre, dedicated to providing high quality, evidence-based treatment to people adversely affected by alcohol, drugs and gambling, integrated with world-leading research and education.

Turning Point is a highly-valued internationally recognised centre within Eastern Health, that delivers outstanding and innovative research, education and treatment services across Australia.

About Gandel Philanthropy

Gandel Philanthropy is one of Australia’s largest independent family philanthropic funds. It has been the vehicle for charitable giving by the extended Gandel family since its formation as The Gandel Charitable Foundation in 1978.

John Gandel AC and Pauline Gandel AC are actively engaged in the philanthropic work and are universally recognised for their generosity and commitment to both Jewish and general causes.

Through Gandel Philanthropy, over the past 40 years they have channelled over $100 million dollars towards supporting various charitable causes in the community. Find out more at