Biljana Dumevska is the Laboratory Operations Coordinator in our Personalised Medicine team. With the national launch of the Zero Childhood Cancer personalised medicine clinical trial in September, there’s plenty to coordinate.

Q: Tell us about the work you do.

A: Basically I’m responsible for the day-to-day oversight of operations and management of workflows to make sure we meet quality service levels for the Zero Childhood Cancer national clinical trial. I work with key people within Children’s Cancer Institute and Kids Cancer Centre, at Sydney Children’s Hospital, Randwick, who lead the trial, and with our research and clinical partners across Australia.

I joined the Personalised Medicine team six months ago. One of my first big jobs is to establish a quality system to ensure appropriate quality assurance, quality control and risk management. The last six months have seen me busy learning the ropes and all the intricate details of the trial. I’ve drawn up workflows, drafted manuals, and performed gap analyses of the current processes. I’ve made recommendations for services and an electronic quality management system, for which I’m now leading the implementation. My role generally is administrative but it’s not uncommon to find me back in the lab.

Q: How did you become part of the Personalised Medicine team?

A: I’ve worked in laboratories for the past 17 years. An opportunity to take the next step in my career presented itself when my previous company relocated overseas. At my job interview with Children’s Cancer Institute, I knew it was meant to be when I saw a poster of my best friends’ daughter, a leukaemia survivor, on the wall outside the interview room.

As a mother, I’d like to think all kids can live a fulfilling and healthy life

Biljana and her daughter on a coastal path in Sydney
Biljana with her daughter

Q: What do you think your work and Zero Childhood Cancer will mean for kids with cancer?

A: As a mother, I’d like to think all kids can live a fulfilling and healthy life and that all parents should have hope, even in some of the most hopeless of situations like cancer. I believe that the personalised approach to treating cancer will help kids with a poor prognosis come out on top.

Q: Can you tell us something about yourself that not many people know?

A: One of my greatest achievements is hiking up Mount Kilimanjaro and reaching the summit of nearly 6000m.

Read more about Zero Childhood Cancer.

Top image: Biljana at work wrangling protocols and spreadsheets.



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