An ASCC Doctor Under the Microscope - Dr Owain Roberts

Dr Owain Roberts has been with the Australian Skin Cancer Clinics in Maitland since July 2016. An experienced general practitioner, Dr Owain has a special interest in skin cancer medicine. Since completing his Diploma in Practical Dermatology, he has undertaken further training in Skin Cancer Medicine and Dermatoscopy.

What sparked your interest in skin cancer detection and management?
Skin cancer is so common in Australia that I felt I needed to know more in order to provide the best management for my patients. To become better at treating skin cancer, not only do you need to study but you also need to immerse yourself in this type of medicine. It also helps that I really enjoy it!

What does a typical day involve at ASCC Maitland?
I currently work a Wednesday morning and a full day on Thursday. These are busy days conducting skin cancer checks and performing skin excisions.  My job also involves educating patients about how to protect themselves against sun exposure and teaching them what to look out for on their skin to detect early skin cancers.

What makes your job at ASCC enjoyable and satisfying?
I enjoy general practice, but I also enjoy the time I spend at the skin cancer clinic. It brings a nice variety into the week with a change in location and patient base. I enjoy the procedural aspect of skin cancer medicine, and the increased accuracy and confidence in diagnosis that study and practice has given me.

What kind of patients do you treat?
I see a broad spectrum of patients at Maitland – young and old; those who have been referred from their GPs and those that have self-referred. Generally, patients come to the clinic for routine skin checks, however new patients often present due to a concerning skin lesion. Most will then get a full skin check at that visit. The majority of our patients are regulars who are confident and happy with the service that they receive at the clinic.

What kind of measures do you take to protect yourself from skin cancer?
Being fair skinned I have always been conscious of the sun, especially living in the Hunter region. Working in skin cancer medicine has hammered home the message of slip slop slap!