Panel - Dr Hannah Burns, Dr Carmen Main & Dr Sarah McMahon

What happens when you put an ENT Surgeon, General Practitioner and a Paediatric Endocrinologist together? A lively panel discussion that's sure to interest, inspire and challenge. Hear from these real-life role models on how they find ikigai in the everyday routine of work and life and maintain their passion for medicine and beyond.


Dr Hannah Burns, a Paediatric ENT surgeon with a special interest in airway disorders, is a visiting medical officer at Lady Cilento Children's Hospital (LCCH) in Brisbane and runs her own private practice. Dr Burns is an senior lecturer and examiner with the University of Queensland.

With an interest in teaching, along with colleagues she has developed an annual paediatric workshop. This uses animal and high fidelity simulation to teach safe paediatric airway techniques to ENT trainees and fellows and is the first of its kind in Australia.

Hannah is an advisor for the Australian government for medical devices within the ENT field and is an active member in Australian Society of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery (ASOHNS), Australian New Zealand Society of Paediatric Otolaryngology, Australasian Vascular Anomaly Network and the Laryngology Society of Australasia. She is on the organising committee for ASOHNS 2019 in Brisbane and within this society has actively promoted the founding of Women In Otolaryngology.

When not on call, answering emails or organising courses, Hannah enjoys relaxing in her Brisbane home, spending to much money at Bunnings trying to cultivate her garden and planning her next holiday to exotic overseas venues. As a supporter of the arts, she enjoys attending ballet and theatre events and catching up with her very supportive friends often enjoying a glass or two of preferably New Zealand wine.


Carmen is a Brisbane based GP and practice owner. She graduated from the University of Queensland in 2003 and obtained her FRACGP in 2010. She is a RACGP examiner and enjoys teaching medical students. She and her husband have transformed an old fashioned inner city Brisbane GP practice into a modern medical centre that prides itself in excellent customer service and whole patient care. She is very thankful to have a clinical team that shares her passion for health promotion and family centred care.

Having watched many friends and colleagues struggle to obtain a positive work-life balance, Carmen is a strong advocate of finding balance between professional and personal lives. She believes that women in medicine have the unique challenge of balancing multiple personal responsibilities in addition to their professional roles. Being a doctor for a number of doctors, Carmen feels that she is perfectly placed to promote doctor’s health and wellbeing and thoroughly enjoys watching doctors find balance.

Carmen is the mother of 2 awesome children, a life partner, a sister, a daughter, a netball coach, a sport mum (soccer, netball, gymnastics, cricket, swimming and dance), a music mum, a chess player that gets beaten by both her children frequently, a business partner, a carer, a GP, a mentor, a leader, a motivator, a counsellor, a surgical assistant, a teacher, an examiner, a student, a great cook, a lover of a good glass of wine, a bookworm and a terrible but enthusiastic gardener. She has just completed her first half marathon.


Dr McMahon is a Senior Staff Specialist in Endocrinology and Diabetes at the Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital. She undertook her basic Paediatric training and advanced training in Endocrinology at the Royal Children’s Hospital in Brisbane and the Princess Margaret Hospital for Children in Perth.

She completed her PhD at the University of Western Australia studying the effect of exercise on glucose requirements in adolescents with type 1 diabetes.

In addition to caring for children and adolescents of all ages with diabetes and endocrine conditions, Dr McMahon enjoys teaching and in particular helping candidates to prepare for the FRACP clinical examination. She is a member of the Senior Examining Panel of the RACP and is Deputy Chair of the Clinical Examination Committee (Paeds) of the RACP.