Dr Maithri Goonetilleke
MBBS, B Med Sci, BSc (Biomedical)
Dr Maithri Goonetilleke is a senior lecturer in the department of epidemiology and preventive medicine. Having graduated medicine in 2006 he spent a large part of the next ten years working in rural parts of Swaziland, Southern Africa where he founded the non-government organisation Possible Dreams International (PDI). PDI works in 32 rural communities addressing social and structural determinants of health and is managed on the ground by local Swazi people.
In addition to his work in Southern Africa he has also co-ordinated single doctor primary care clinics with the Daasanach people of Northern Kenya and the Orma tribe of Eastern Kenya.
Maithri’s research focus is relationships between endemic disease and structural violence in SubSaharan Africa and teaches public health and health promotion to undergraduate medical and biomedical science students. He is author of the book “Vula Bevalile: Letters from a Young doctor” and speaks regularly around Australia and internationally on issues related to HIV/AIDS, extreme poverty and global health advocacy. Maithri has featured regularly on national and international media programs and was guest speaker at the TEDX Melbourne Conference in 2015 and the 2013 Melbourne Writers Festival. He is a board member of the Australian based Health Anthropology network and an Associate of the centre for Ethics in Medicine and Society. He was awarded the Carey medal in 2012 for outstanding and exceptional service to the wider community and in 2016 was recipient of a Vice Chancellors award for commitment to Inclusion and Diversity at Monash University.
In Australia he has worked across a variety of clinical roles including medical and emergency registrar positions in tertiary hospitals, running sole-doctor emergency departments in rural areas, working with Indigenous communities, correctional facilities and community general practice.