Member for Higgins, Dr Katie Allen MP is no stranger to medicine. Prior to entering parliament, she was a paediatrician and conducted many years of research in the allergy field.
Early on in her training, Dr Allen was a medical student at The Alfred hospital in Melbourne. We invited her to return for a look inside the pathology laboratory there, to meet those delivering life-saving test results every day, and learn about innovations in pathology.
During the tour, Dr Allen was particularly impressed with technology automating the movement of specimens around the lab and onto sophisticated analysers, and with the latest technology in the microbiology department that helps to ensure appropriate prescribing of antibiotics.
She was welcomed by Professor Catriona McLean, head of the anatomical pathology department who showed Dr Allen an unusual case of Creutzfeldt – Jakob Disease (CJD) under the microscope. This is a very rare condition in Australia. All Victorian, Tasmanian and South Australian cases of CJD come for analysis to Professor McLean as part of Nation-wide CJD surveillance.