Steve is a (semi-retired) professor of psychiatry at Melbourne University and a psychiatrist at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne. Steve is passionate about health communication, and has aimed to spread the word about good mental health for decades. He co-authored (with Catherine Deveny) the go-to general public guide for mental health “Mental: Everything you never knew you needed to know about Mental Health” which is available as an Australian edition, plus a UK edition (specific to the NHS), and a translated Chinese edition. He also co-wrote (with Rob Selzer) the pocket guide to psychiatry for students “Psych Lite – Psychiatry that’s easy to read.”
Steve is a frequent media commentator on health matters. For many years he appeared on Melbourne’s ABC Radio and 3RRR (as Dr DoLittle on Radiotherapy), as well as hosting the 2 part SBS TV documentary “How ‘mad’ are you?” exploring stigma in mental health.
Steve’s research interests include psycho-oncology, infectious diseases, emergency psychiatry, trauma psychiatry, medical education, the psychiatric complications of medical disorders and the neurobiology of anxiety disorders.
Since becoming ‘semi-retired’ Steve has focussed his efforts on writing fiction, whilst continuing to do occasional locums around Australia and support the Wellbeing Program at Peter Mac.
Thanks for visiting my website. Let me introduce myself – I’m a psychiatrist with a passion for communication! I trained as a doctor and worked in Melbourne before specialising in psychiatry. For over 15 years I was head of the Consultation, Liaison and Emergency Psychiatry Service at Alfred Health before moving to become the director of the Psychosocial Oncology Program at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne. My team manages all of the psychological and social aspects of cancer care as well as leading a research program. As long as I’ve been a doctor I’ve also been a teacher – two decades now. I’m a professor of psychiatry at Melbourne University, and teach in a range of courses at various universities. My students include medical, nursing, pharmacy & social work students and junior doctors in training for various specialties. Science is also a passion – and I completed a doctorate in medicine by research in 2004. My thesis examined the neurobiology of anxiety disorder using brain imaging techniques. I also researched in HIV and a range of other medical conditions, as well as studying the best ways to teach medicine. My current research passion is the psychosocial aspects of cancer care. My interest in radio began around 2005. I joined the panel on Radiotherapy – a health chat show on Melbourne’s 3RRR community radio station using the pseudonym Dr DoLittle. Later I became one of the hosts. This lead to various other radio gigs, including a 2 year stint as the resident shrink on Steve Vizard’s show on MTR. In 2012 Lindy Burns from 774ABC invited Melbourne lawyer (& ABC radio stalwart) Bill O’Shea & myself to join her in a weekly health and law show called Writs & Cures: Bill & Steve’s Radio Adventures. With Lindy as host we dissect a wide range of health and law topics and have interviewed over 100 guest including many leading scientists, lawyers and doctors in Melbourne. I continue to contribute health commentary to a range of other shows & stations. I’m also a fan of TV and have appeared on various news or chat shows – most recently doing a series of interviews on Network 10’s The Project and Studio 10. My most recent challenge has been converting my medical/scientific writing to more accessible popular writing. Not an easy task – scientific dialogue doesn’t translate easily into everyday language (not to mention my struggles with spelling and grammar). After writing dozens of scientific papers I co-wrote an introductory psychiatry text book with Rob Selzer “Psych–Lite: Psychiatry that’s easy to read.” Soon after I began writing a regular column for The Conversation called “Life on the couch – shining a psychological light on people, culture and society.” One day I’d like to venture away from science and health and try fiction. Retirement maybe? Apart from all this you’ll find me chatting in cafes, competing in the odd triathlon, playing drums badly in a couple of covers bands & watching hours and hours of my son playing sport (& apparently taking too many photos). Hope you enjoy my website.
- Psychiatrist at Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre
- Director of Psychosocial Oncology and Cancer Experiences Research at Peter Mac
- Professor of Psychiatry at Melbourne University
- Media commentator on ABC News Breakfast TV, ABC Melbourne Radio and 3RRR Community Radio
- TV host of “How ‘mad’ are you?” on the SBS Network
- Co-Author with Catherine Deveny of “Mental: Everything you never knew you needed to know about Mental Health”
- Writer of academic articles and books
- Qualifications: MB, BS. M.Med(psych). M.D. FRANZCP