Sydney Neurology is a an academically-focused associate Neurology practice which was established in 2004 to provide both a centre of excellence in outpatient neurological care and a focus for clinical neurology research, with an emphasis on neuro-inflammatory diseases such as multiple sclerosis. In tandem, clinical research and teaching activities have been substantially expanded through partnerships with BMRI and external funding bodies such as Multiple Sclerosis Australia.
Founded by Professor John Pollard, Dr Michael Barnett and A/Prof Stephen Reddel, the practice now comprises a dedicated team of neurologists, nurses, neurophysiology technicians and administrative staff. Neurologists at the practice have subspeciality expertise across a broad array of neurological disorders, and are affiliated with leading teaching hospitals in Sydney including Royal Prince Alfred, Concord and St George hospitals. Additionally, Sydney Neurology facilitates the provision of the BMRI Multiple Sclerosis Clinic, which is run in partnership with MS Australia and Royal Prince Alfred Hospital.
Sydney Neurology is integrated with Sydney University's undergraduate medical teaching program, providing a venue and a patient base for neurology teaching in a specialty with diminishing opportunities for inpatient teaching. Patients recognise the value/importance of teaching and come to the BMRI expressly for this purpose. Since 2011 Sydney Neurology and the BMRI MS Clinic have facilitated regular teaching for medical registrars and advanced trainees in Neurology. Additionally, the practice hosts the BMRI/RPAH MS Fellow, a position designed to provide high level subspecialty training in multiple sclerosis and neuroimmunology for the next generation of neurologists. This partnership between individual neurologists, the BMRI/University and teaching hospitals is unique in Australia.
Neurology research at BMRI is multifaceted and expanding. Our program has investigator driven clinical; externally sponsored clinical trial; and basic science arms. Clinical neurology services at BMRI provided by Sydney Neurology facilitate the first and second of these arms; additionally, there is significant interaction between our clinical and basic science arms in translational research. For instance patients seen in the Neurology clinics provide serum samples for the study of inflammatory neuropathies, and DNA for analysis of MS susceptibility factors – work that is carried out in the BMRI's basic sciences laboratories.