OUR THERAPISTS

 

DR SIGRUN GUTJAHR

FRANZCP, MMH, Cert. Psychotherapy Psych

Consultant Psychiatrist, ISTDP Psychotherapist

Dr Sigrun Gutjahr is an experienced consultant psychiatrist and psychotherapist who has practiced on the Gold Coast for over 12 years in both public and private settings after completing her training in psychiatry in Sydney. She has a wide range of experience in mental health, working with patients with severe psychotic illness as well as mood disorders, anxiety, depression and personality disorders. She has worked for many years with patients struggling with self-harming behaviours and has run a DBT program for this group.

Dr Gutjahr is a senior psychiatrist with the Gold Coast mental health service where her focus is on rehabilitation as well as treatment for patients with personality disorder. She supervises a psychotherapy clinic which provides training to registrars of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatry (RANZCP).

While trained in  DBT  and psychodynamic psychotherapy her focus is now on Intensive short term dynamic psychotherapy ISTDP which is an efficient and evidence based treatment for a wide range of presentations.

Medication review and planning forms part of the assessment and will be discussed with the patients.

She holds a Masters in psychotherapy in psychiatric practice and is a member of the faculty of psychotherapy of the RANZCP.

 

 

 

DR SARAH WALKER

MPsych(Clin), DPsych(Clin), MAPS, MCCP

Clinical Psychologist, ISTDP Psychotherapist

Dr Sarah Walker is a Clinical Psychologist and has extensive experience in working with a broad range of adult psychological problems including anxiety disorders, depression, trauma (PTSD), eating disorders, personality disorders, interpersonal difficulties and health psychology.

Sarah has specialist training in eating disorders, personality disorders and medically unexplained symptoms.  She has presented at conferences on the topic of treatment and research outcomes of eating disorder patients.

Sarah is a Senior Psychologist in the public sector and works part time in private practice, providing treatment for adults and older adolescents. She is a registered Clinical Supervisor with the board of psychologists (APHRA) and a registered supervisor for the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP).

Sarah is trained and experienced in the application of a range of evidence based treatment models including behavioural, cognitive and dynamic models. Her preferred model of therapy is Intensive Short Term Psychotherapy (ISTDP) having completed 3 years core training and currently completing advanced training in ISTDP.  ISTDP is a dynamic approach which has extensive evidence for resistant depression, anxiety and personality disorders.

 

 

DR Pejman Hoviatdoost

MPsych(Clin), PHDCP (Doctor of Philosophy)MAPS, MCCP

Clinical Psychologist, ISTDP Psychotherapist

Dr Pejman Hoviatdoost is a Clinical Psychologist and has extensive experience in working with a broad range of adult psychological problems including anxiety disorders, depression, drug and alcohol addiction, personality disorders and interpersonal difficulties. Pejman completed his Bachelor degree in Clinical Psychology in Iran, at University of Tehran. Pejman moved to Australia 10 years ago where he completed his Master degree in Clinical Psychology at Griffith University, and became a member of College of Clinical Psychologists. Pejman is a registered clinical supervisor, he provides supervision for private psychologists and psychology interns at Griffith University.

Pejman specialises in Intensive Short Term Dynamic Psychotherapy (ISTDP), he has more than seven years of training in this model. Pejman is currently undertaking a part-time PhD with the Queensland University of Technology (QUT), his research aims to better understand the mechanisms of change in ISTDP across the spectrum of psychological disorders.

Pejman provides psychotherapy in English and Farsi (Persian).

 

 

Dr Jean lightbody

DPsych. (Clin), BPsych(Hons), BSc(Psych)

Clinical Psychologist

Jean works with people experiencing distress related to anxiety, depression, emotional dysregulation, developmental disability, adverse life circumstances, life adjustments and transitions.

She helps people to understand their emotions, thinking and life patterns so they can increase thinking habits, positive emotions and behaviours consistent with wellbeing and healthy relationships.

Jean has extensive experience working in government, non-government and private sector roles. She has developed programs and facilitated a range of therapy groups including Dialectical Behaviour Therapy groups in private hospital setting and in the community.

Jean uses evidence-based approaches tailored to her client's specific needs and diagnosis, and grounded in research on attachment relationships, human development, learning, behaviour and emotion regulation.

Jean is a compassionate, down-to-earth, non-judgmental human being.

 

 

Renee McLaughlin

B Psych (Hons), Assoc MAPS

Registered Psychologist, ISTDP Psychotherapist

Renee is a registered psychologist with over 15 years’ experience providing treatment for a range of emotional problems, interpersonal difficulties and self-destructive behaviours. Having worked across a variety of organisational settings, Renee brings to her work a wealth of knowledge and professional experience. Prior to commencing private practice 6 years ago, Renee worked as a staff psychologist for Qld Health and Qld Police. She has also held positions with Education Qld and Corrective Services.

While Renee has extensive training in a range of therapeutic models, she works predominately from an Intensive Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy (ISTDP) framework. ISTDP is an evidence-based psychotherapy that facilitates long-term resolution of a broad range of psychological and psychiatric problems. It’s a therapy that looks beyond symptom treatment and focuses on treating the root cause of the problem. Having completed 3 years core training in this model, Renee is currently completing advance training in ISDTP.

Renee has a trusted reputation within the Gold Coast community with the bulk of her referrals coming from word of mouth. She is a warm and caring psychologist who strives to work in partnership with her clients to create the outcomes they desire. Renee is passionate about helping clients to build on their strengths to achieve meaningful and sustained outcomes.

Renee is also a registered supervisor with the Psychology Board of Australia and is regularly involved in the supervision of other psychologists.

     

 

 

Vanessa Wowk

B.Comm., B. AppPsych., GradDipPsych., BSocSc(Psych)(First Class Hons)., MPsych(Clin)., FAPS

Clincal Psychologist

Vanessa Wowk is a Clinical Psychologist and has extensive experience in working with a broad range of adult psychological problems including anxiety disorders, depression, trauma (PTSD), interpersonal difficulties, substance misuse, and health psychology. Vanessa is a Senior Psychologist in the public sector, and works part time in private practise. Vanessa has been working across diverse treatment settings in both the public and private sector for over 11 years.

Vanessa has trained in the application of a range of evidence-based approaches and modalities including Cognitive-Behaviour Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), Schema Therapy and Gottman Method (Level 1). Applying an eclectic holisitic approach with a focus on psychological wellness and recovery, Vanessa is interested in working with complex psychological problems, particularly womens health, and attachment and trauma (PTSD).

Vanessa is currently completing her Advanced Certification in Schema Therapy through the Schema Therapy Institute Australia. Schema Therapy is an evidence-based treatment for chronic problems including mood disorders, PTSD and personality disorders. Schema Therapy aims to explore the underlying factors maintaining lifelong dysfunctional patterns of behaviour, and utilise treatment interventions to meet the psychological needs to manage painful feelings, not just change thinking.

 

 

Penelope Hollyer

Post Graduate Dip Nursing (Mental Health), BSc Psychology (Hons), Cert. HE Counselling skills

Penelope Hollyer is a senior registered Mental Health Nurse with extensive experience working in the public and private mental health sector.

Penelope became a UK registered Mental Health Nurse in 2004 and spent her early career in the inpatient setting, providing care to acutely unwell mental health patients. Penelope worked in the inpatient psychology services, delivering and coordinating both group and individual psychological interventions. She co-developed the first DBT skills group and DBT informed interventions for acute care services (inpatient and community). This service was recognised as the first ‘acute care pathway’ in the district, to deliver psychological interventions suitable for acutely unwell patients.

Penelope immigrated to the Gold Coast in 2014 and has since provided community psychological interventions and treatment within the Gold Coast Public Health Service. She has extensive experience caring for people living with varying complex mental health problems such as, psychosis, mood and anxiety disorders, personality disorders and eating disorders. In 2019, Penelope was involved in the implementation and roll out of the first public personality disorder specific service in Queensland.

Penelope is trained in a range of psychological modalities and is trained in Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT). She works as a psychotherapist for Queensland Health and runs a private practice. Her main area of interest is delivering evidence based psychological interventions for personality disorders and people experiencing challenges in their interpersonal relationships She has a particular interest in Intensive Short Term Dynamic Psychotherapy (ISTDP) and is currently undertaking her 3-year core training program. She enjoys working with adults from a wide age range from 18 +

Penelope takes an individualised approach to therapy, aiming to release people from unnecessary suffering, regardless of diagnosis. She is a caring and approachable professional who will support you on your therapeutic goals to recovery.

Penelope is available to see adults at Robina Therapy fortnightly on Monday mornings.

   

 

MIA DELOS

BSocSc(Psych)(Hons), MPsych(Clin)

Mia Delos is a Clinical Psychologist with over 7 years’ experience working in public mental health including acute, community and inpatient services, as well as roles in health psychology, education/training, projects and research. She has also helped clients in private practice experiencing a wide variety of mental health issues.

Mia currently holds a senior position in a public sector Personality Disorder service, an area she is passionate about, providing individual and group therapeutic interventions to her clients. Prior to this, she spent a number of years working in suicide prevention, another of her key interest areas.

Mia has experience assisting clients with a broad range of mental health difficulties including depression, anxiety, trauma, psychosis, adjustment issues, emotional dysregulation and personality disorders. She is client-centred and utilises a number of evidence-based modalities including Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and Dialectical Behaviour Therapy skills training.

Mia is expanding her skillset, currently undertaking a three-year core training in Intensive Short Term Dynamic Psychotherapy, a modality she is excited to offer her clients to address the unconscious mechanisms that cause their symptoms and suffering.

Mia is available to see adults at Robina Therapy fortnightly on Tuesday mornings.

 

   
 

MAREE STALKER

Bachelor of Social Work (BSW), Bachelor of Social Science (Human Services) (BSSC) (MAASW)

Maree Stalker is a Senior Social Worker, accredited with the Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW). She has over twenty-five years of experience working within the Public and private mental health sector. Over this 25 year period, Maree has assisted people with a variety of mental health issues including; psychosis, mood disorders, complex trauma, anxiety, depression and personality disorders.

Maree’s passion is delivering individual psychotherapy to people experiencing Personality Disorders and emotion dysregulation. She has extensive experience assisting people to navigate trauma and family issues and utilises a variety of therapeutic modalities including Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Cognitive Behaviour Therapy and Dialectical Behaviour Therapy.

Maree is currently completing Intensive Short Term Dynamic Psychotherapy training to further her skills in this area.

In her current public role, Maree delivers DBT skills groups and individual therapy for a specialist personality disorder service, utilising a family systems approach. Prior to this role, she has worked as part of a busy community mental health service providing clinical leadership, training and supervision to junior staff across the public sector as well as mental health case management to the local community.

Maree is known to her colleagues and consumers as calm in a crisis situation, and a warm and caring clinician whose goal is to instil agency in others to achieve set goals and optimal recovery

Maree is available to see adults at Robina Therapy fortnightly on Monday mornings.

 

 

Dr LAKMI SENEVIRATNE                                                        

MBBS, MD(Psych), FRANZCP

Dr. Lakmi Seneviratne is a consultant psychiatrist working in general adult psychiatry in public mental health. She completed her medical degree at the University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Sri Lanka in 2008. She obtained her Doctorate of Medicine (Psychiatry) from the University of Colombo in 2014 and was Board Certified as a Psychiatrist in 2016. Dr. Seneviratne received her fellowship from the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists in 2021.

She has a wide range of experience working with patients with mood disorders, anxiety disorders, psychosis, trauma, personality disorders and substance misuse. Psychotherapy has been an integral area of her training and practice. Dr. Seneviratne has carried out research looking at the impact of brief psychotherapies on psychological distress. She has received the Psychotherapy Award from the Sri Lanka College of Psychiatrists in 2019. Dr. Seneviratne is trained in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, Mindfulness Based Therapy and Counselling and Solution Focused Brief Therapy. However, her current focus is Intensive Short Term Dynamic Psychotherapy (ISTDP).

She is available to see adult patients for psychotherapy on Saturday mornings

 

 

Administration

Our team of qualified receptionists will happily provide you with administrative support, such as booking appointments, providing information on our services or practitioners, filing your documents, lodging Medicare claims on-line, and assisting with whatever we can. Our goal is to achieve strong communication and make you feel comfortable at our practice, and we hope you find that our receptionists are approachable, compassionate, and accommodating to your needs. You will be greeted by one of our friendly receptionists when you visit our practice, however, you can also contact us by phone or email and we will provide as much assistance as possible.