Meet our practitioners below.

Mr Douraid Abbas M.B.ChB (Iraq), F.R.A.C.S.

Mr Abbas started his medical career in Brisbane, Queensland.

In 2003 he was selected to join the Basic Surgical Training Program that is run by the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons.  This was followed by the Advanced Training Program in General Surgery at the Royal Brisbane Hospital.  Mr Abbas was awarded fellowship in early 2011.

Mr Abbas was recognised by GESA for endoscopy (colonoscopy and  gastroscopy) during 2011.  He has worked in different states of Australia at a locum consultant level.

As a Junior Consultant (Fellow), Mr Abbas worked at the Geelong Hospital gaining further training in breast, thyroid, colorectal and bariatric surgery from leading surgeons in these fields. 

His interest in cancer surgery, in particular oncoplastic, recently lead him to attend Paris for further training under Krishna Cluogh.

Other interests include colorectal surgery and haemorrhoid treatment via the Haemorrhoidal Artery Ligation – Recto Anal Repair (HAL-RAR), an operation designed to eradicate haemorrhoids using a Doppler guided probe to locate and ligate all the arteries supplying the haemorrhoids.  Mr Abbas also developed an interest in Bariatric surgery and has worked with leading bariatric surgeons in both Brisbane and Geelong Hospitals.

Mr Abbas teaches medical students for Deakin University and the University of Notre Dame.

Along with his wife and 3 children, Mr Abbas moved permanently to Ballarat in early 2014.




Mr Stuart EatonMBBS(Melb) F.R.A.C.S.

Mr. Stuart Eaton obtained his medical degree through Melbourne University and then went on to complete his surgical training with the Royal Melbourne Hospital by 1998. Stuart then spent a fellowship year in Surgical Oncology at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Institute in East Melbourne before travelling to the United Kingdom to train further in upper gastrointestinal disease with a focus on laparoscopic approaches to surgical therapies.

Stuart returned to Australia in 2001 and commenced practice in Ballarat with Central Highlands Surgeons at that time. He also gained an appointment with Ballarat Health Services on the Upper GI Unit. Currently he also is credentialed for work at St John of God Hospital Ballarat, Southwest Healthcare (Camperdown Hospital) and the Ballarat Day Procedure Centre on Howitt Street.
In his time in Ballarat Stuart performed the first transhiatal oesophagectomy in the town as well as the first laparoscopic adrenalectomy and more recently the first laparoscopic oesophagectomy. He has also completed training in bariatric surgery for the management of obesity and metabolic disorders. This was initially involving laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding and then evolved to laparoscopic sleeve gastric resection and laparoscopic gastric bypass. Revision surgery is becoming an increasing part of this field of treatment.

As well as his passion for laparoscopic surgery Stuart maintains a strong interest in Surgical Oncology with an ongoing surgical appointment with Breastscreen and clinical interest in the surgical management of breast cancer and melanoma. Recently he has been performing oncoplastic surgical techniques to assist with breast shape remodelling after partial resections for cancer, allowing for larger resections and improved cosmetic outcomes in selected cases.

Surgical techniques that Stuart received post fellowship training in and maintains a strong interest in are thyroid and parathyroid resection including focussed parathyroidectomy as well as laparoscopic inguinal hernia repair via a transabdominal technique. This approach allows repair for most herniae, even very large and recurrent herniae including recurrent herniae previously repaired either in an open or laparoscopic fashion. It also allows for visualisation of the opposite side and in selected cases repair of subclinical but significant defects if seen.

Outside of his surgical pursuits Stuart enjoys spending time with his wife and three boys as well as time cycling, bushwalking and fishing.


Mr Tom Fisher  MBBS(Melb) F.R.A.C.S.

Tom is a Specialist General Surgeon with further expertise in colorectal surgery.

He graduated from the University of Melbourne in 1993. 
After undertaking training in the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons Victorian Training Program, Tom was awarded a fellowship in 2004.

He spent a year in Ballarat, working on the Colorectal Unit at Ballarat Health Services Base Hospital as a fellow.

He was then appointed as a Locum Consultant Surgeon on the Colorectal Unit in Portsmouth in the United Kingdom.  Here he gained further expertise in colorectal surgery, laparoscopic surgery and emergency surgery.

In 2006 he returned to Ballarat, gaining an appointment as a Consultant Surgeon on the Colorectal Unit at Ballarat Health Services Base Hospital.

Tom also provides surgical and endoscopy service to St John of God Hospital Ballarat and the Ballarat Day Procedure Centre.

He visits Ararat and Daylesford where he consults and operates, providing a service to both public and private patients.


Mr Stephen TobinMBBS (Melb), F.R.A.C.S.

Stephen Tobin grew up in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne and attended the University of Melbourne, graduating MBBS in 1981.  He continued his training at St Vincent’s Hospital in Melbourne, and completed a residency in General Surgery, obtaining FRACS in 1989.  During this time he gained extensive experience in gastro-intestinal and breast surgery.  In 1989 and 1990 he worked as a senior registrar in the Cambridge/Ipswich system in eastern England.  One of these years was spent doing colorectal surgery entirely and apart from extensive experience in acute and major operations, he developed specific skills in the management of rectal prolapse (Delorme operation) and in the management of ulcerative colitis (W pouch operation).

Upon returning to Australia in 1991 he practised successfully in Canberra for a year.  In 1992 he commenced in Ballarat and subsequently developed a practice known as Central Highlands Surgeons.  This practice expanded subsequently over several years with the addition of other surgeons most recently in 2014.

Major contributions were made to the local hospital system during this time with roles as Secretary of the Medical Advisory Committee (MAC)  at St John of God Hospital for three years and Chair of the MAC of St John of God Hospital for three years.  He also chaired the Breast Services Enhancement Program for four years.  He was responsible for the institution of Tuesday lunchtime meetings at Ballarat Base Hospital alternate with a four week cycle of teaching and clinical review sessions around surgical radiology, surgical pathology and morbidity and mortality meetings and registrar presentations.

During this time, from a clinical perspective, colorectal surgery was developed with local introduction of the Delorme operation as well as the W pouch operation.  The management of rectal cancer was also changed with the introduction of formal mesorectal excision of the rectum for carcinoma of the rectum, as well as the introduction of pre-operative radiotherapy in 1996. Pre-operative radiotherapy in selected cases was not widely used in Victoria until the 2000’s.  Laparoscopic colorectal surgery was also introduced in 1996.

The clinical workload in both Ballarat Base Hospital and St John of God Hospital grew during this time and Stephen was responsible for expanding the rotating registrar system  (from city hospitals) from one to four registrars over a period of 10 years and that system endures to this day.  The General Surgical Department at Ballarat Base Hospital was reorganised as well so that surgeons, albeit in different private practices, practise along the lines of their special interests in the public hospital system.  This tied in nicely to the expanded registrar numbers and provided a far more comprehensive system. 

Along the way there were several major overseas visits and conferences.  Stephen’s interest in education grew and he completed a Graduate Certificate in Clinical Education through the University of New South Wales in 2003. Sabbatical leave enabled an overseas post with six-months as locum senior colorectal surgeon in Portsmouth, UK. He subsequently became involved further with medical school education with a meeting to discuss expanded medical school numbers in 2006 and subsequent appointments to the University of Notre Dame (2008) and Deakin University (2010) as Associate Professor.

In 2011 and 2012 he chaired the revision of the Surgical Teachers Course being the major surgical education course provided by RACS.  In 2012 he was appointed Dean of Education at Royal Australasian  College of Surgeons, the major leadership position in education and professional development.   Following this appointment, he can no longer work regularly at Ballarat Base Hospital.

Stephen continues as a full member of Central Highlands Surgeons but necessarily works part time as Dean of Education at RACS in Melbourne.