Dr Ranjana Srivastava OAM

Fulbright Scholar, Oncologist, Writer & Broadcaster

Welcome to my website! I am a physician practicing oncology and internal medicine in Australia. I believe that the art of medicine is as important as its science and I am grateful for the support of the institutions and individuals who make it possible for me to promote my mission.

I invite you to read my columns and books and get in touch with your comments.

Ranjana Srivastava: ABC Life Matters--Illness in the Family

This video is an audio of the three part series discussing how families cope with a member with a chronic illness

Dr Ranjana Srivastava OAM, was educated in India, the United Kingdom, the United States and Australia. She graduated from Monash University with a first-class honours degree and several awards in medicine. Ranjana undertook her internship, residency and specialist training at various Melbourne hospitals.

In 2004 she won the prestigious Fulbright Award, which she completed at the University of Chicago. She was admitted as a fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians in 2005 and started practicing oncology in the public hospital system. In 2014 Ranjana was recognised by Monash University as the Distinguished Alumni of the Year. She was also appointed an adjunct associate professor in the Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences. Ranjana was included in Westpac’s 100 Influential Women of 2015.

Imagine for a moment being diagnosed with cancer and being one of the 14 million people worldwide each year shattered by a diagnosis that sinks the heart like none other. If you are lucky enough to live in one of the handful of sufficiently resourced countries, you get to meet an oncologist.
The ceilings soar impressively high, the stained glass windows are exquisite, and the satin-adorned pews stretch majestically to the dignified altar. Amid the silence punctuated by the barest of sobs, I spot doctors whom I have long lost track of. And row upon row of nurses, still tight years later.

The Interpreter

When an interpreter hesitates before translating bad news, an oncologist realises how little consideration most health care professionals give to these invaluable conduits who are also human beings, emotionally affected by the news they help to break.

"I just need a letter to say I am fit to fly," he says, my young patient who has gone from being a paragon of fitness to needing a walking stick in a space of only two years. Today, he is on an unscheduled visit, promising not to stay long, not that I mind.
An unimpressed nurse summons the oncology fellow to the chemotherapy chair. "I am not prepared to treat him with chemo. He can barely stay awake." "But his oncologist wants to push on," the fellow responds. "The patient doesn't seem to understand how sick he is or how chemotherapy is doing harm.
Winner of the 2013 Human Rights Literature Award