Tissa Wijeratne is a senior Neurologist, Professor in Neurology , Director, Academic Medicine and head of the Department of Neurology and Stroke at Western Health (Victoria, Australia). He was the chair
International Working Group for Young Neurologists and Trainees (2010 –2012), He is the current Chair, Special Interest Group for Headaches and Migraines, World Federation of NeuroRehabilitation and Chair, Public Awareness and Advocacy committee ( 2018– present) with the World Federation of Neurology. He is the first Sri Lankan neurologist to be elected as a member of the International Committee with the American Academy of Neurology (2018 – present) and was awarded the prestigious Donald M Palatucci Advocacy Leadership in 2008. For his contribution to global neurological education and leadership among young neurologists, he became one of the first neurologist in the world to be bestowed the Ted Munsat Award (World Federation of Neurology, 2017). Tissa is a finalist, Stroke champion award , National Stroke Foundation 2019 . He is the inaugural recipient of a prestigious Priscilla Kincaid-Smith award, AMA ,Australia,2019 for his outstanding contribution as an academic neurologist, mentor, and advocate. He is a recipient A.B. Baker Teacher Recognition award, AAN 2020, USA.
Tissa is a proficient publisher and accomplished international speaker with his translational research in clinical neurology generating more than 246 publications and 128 invited presentations. He has more than 73000 citations (h- index = 73) and maintains a full-time clinical commitment as leader of the fastest growing stroke & headache service in Australia (Western Health). He established this state-of-the-art neurology service, which has been pioneering headache care in Australia since 2006. To further assist headache professionals and the community, Tissa masterminded the birth of the Australian and New Zealand Headache Society in 2014 ( in collaboration with four of his colleague founder members) and birth of James Lance-Peter Goadsby Annual Migraine Oration and Symposium 2018.
A firm believer in the power of education and equity in healthcare, Tissa is committed to bridging the divide between “rural and urban” and the “developing and developed world”. His vision is to simply ensure patients have access to the best practitioners, healthcare, and facilities even when limited resources are available. Since 1996, Tissa has been mentoring and teaching medical students from rural and diverse backgrounds across three different continents. He has unparalleled experience in designing and delivering world class e- learning and online course content in the field of neurology.
With an education mandate, Tissa contributed to the development of stroke and headache services in resource limited settings delivering more than 150 workshops since 2008 ( in collaboration with his colleagues in these regions). He established the Sri Lankan chapter for Pain ( In collaboration with his colleagues in Kandy, Sri Lanka), IASP and set the foundation towards a massive pain education program throughout Sri Lanka, which included number of workshops, two books and a CD of lectures from two annual scientific congresses, ensuring millions of Sri Lankan patients obtained better pain management during the early years of this chapter.
A strong track record in community outreach, Tissa has published more than 3000 media (print and radio) segments as a medical journalist. He continues to publish public health education materials globally, through his activities on World Brain Day, in collaboration with the World Federation of Neurology.
He founded the David Marsden Memorial Annual Movement Disorders Symposium and successfully advocated for free membership of Movement Disorders Society for neurologists from low to middle income countries. He successfully advocated for free membership for all medical students worldwide to the American Academy of Neurology.
Tissa is a popular supervisor trainer , Royal Australasian College of Physicians, Australia & New Zealand since 2008. He trained 1800 physicians from Australia and New Zealand on supervision through RACP online supervisor training throughout the pandemic. He launched the world first Global Migraine Bill of Rights at Genova, WFNR in March 2019 . He led the 2019 ,2020,2021 WBD campaigns with huge impact worldwide .
Employment: Director and Chair, Department of Neurology, Western Health. Professor, Victoria University; Professor, University of Melbourne; Professor, La Trobe University; Professor, RMIT (University), Australia; Professor, Rajarata University, Sri Lanka
Society leadership/Board position: Director, Migraine Foundation, Australia (Non-Profit); Director, Australian Institute of Migraine (Non-Profit); Director, Brain Foundation Australia (Non-profit); Foundation Secretary, Web editor, Social Media team leader Australia New Zealand Headache Society (2015-2020)
Society membership: Co-Founder and Chair World Brain Day, World Federation of Neurology; Chair, Public Awareness and Advocacy, World Federation of Neurology
Research support: 5.6 million Aus. $, NHMRC, Industry and academic initiated clinical trials
Expert testimony: Australian Football League and Ministry of Sports, on ad hoc
Data Safety Monitoring Board/Advisory Board: CASCOM , Monash University ( Stroke Prevention Project)
Clinical trials involvement: Over 100 clinical trials in Stroke, PI, HEAD study group ( major headache epidemiological study with over 15 publications in headache in ED , none funded)
Relationship with scientific journals: Editor in Chief, Neurology International, MDPI; Review Editor for several open access journals with Frontiers
Other: Duel citizen with Sri Lanka and I call Sri Lanka and Australia, both home.