Community advisory committee

To be the best health service we can be, BRHS needs the feedback and ideas of local people that use the health service.

Our Community Advisory Committee provides invaluable guidance and input into a range of areas related to our services.

It plays a crucial role in the assessment and review of our health information publications and brochures in addition to providing input into the design and delivery of quality initiatives and services.

Information and Application Materials



Garry Ball

This is my second year as a member of the Committee. I joined the Committee as I wanted to give something back to BRHS. I was fortunate enough to be part of a review of Pharmacy operations last year.

I have been using the services at Allied Health for hand therapy, physiotherapy and falls and balance classes which have all helped me to maintain my current lifestyle.

I am married to Wendy and we have three adult children who now live in Melbourne.

I play croquet (though not very well) and am on two other Committees in Bairnsdale as well as being a trustee of the Lucknow Memorial Hall. 

I am now retired but previously worked in Human Resources at East Gippsland Shire Council and Uniting in Bairnsdale. 

Catherine Downes

I grew up in Bendigo, moving to Melbourne for university, where I obtained a Ph.D in pharmacology.

After a few years living in Canberra, I currently work remotely for the Federal Government within IP Australia, the government agency that manages intellectual property rights.

My family has chosen to live in Bairnsdale for the proximity to the wonderful Gippsland natural environment and to support my partner in his agricultural career.

My belief that a healthy, well cared for community can achieve greater things is what motivated me to join the Community Advisory Committee.

Karly McCaskill

A strategic marketing professional, Karly worked for eight years as the Executive Officer of East Gippsland Marketing, a regional marketing body created by local Government and the community to promote the region to investors, new residents and visitors.

She is currently the National Marketing & Communications Manager for Workways Australia, a NFP employment and community services provider; and previously served on the Board of Committee for Gippsland.

Karly is passionate about access to quality healthcare in regional and rural communities and sees it as a driving force of economic development in East Gippsland.

Sue Smethurst

It’s a great privilege to be a member of the Community Advisory Committee.

I’m a born and bred Gippslander, now dividing my time between Melbourne and beautiful East Gippsland. As a journalist, author and media communications specialist, I have been very fortunate that my career has taken me around the world, but there’s no place like home and it’s wonderful to be able to participate and give back to the community in some way.

The CAC is a terrific vehicle to connect the local community and the hospital and I really enjoy the contributions of the committee who share my passion to ensure BRHS delivers the best possible care and health support services to our region.

Kylie Miller

Kylie Miller

Kylie Miller is an award-winning journalist and communications consultant with extensive experience working in Australia and overseas.

After trading city life for a tree change in East Gippsland, Kylie experienced first-hand the devastating Black Summer bushfires.

Kylie won a Federal Government grant and co-wrote her first children’s picture book, Heroes of Black Summer, to help children process trauma after the disaster. It was published by Australian Geographic in 2021.

Her second picture book, Albert, The Greyhound Who Loves to Run, was published by Laneway Press in May 2022. It was the first in a series of three greyhound picture books. Teddy, The Most Beautiful Boy in the World, launched in October 2022.

Kylie’s books cover themes such as building resilience, overcoming anxiety, and the importance of diversity and inclusion.

Kylie has a rare autoimmune disease managed by regular, high-quality medical treatment.  

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