Meet Lynne Defrenne. She has been the friendly face of the Perth Chest Clinic since 1992 and is well-known to participants of the Asbestos Review Program – a research and support program for people exposed to asbestos.
Lynne has worked for Professor Bill Musk for 19 years and has been the clinic administrator for 17 of those.
Not only does she run the clinic and assist with testing, but she has become a support person for the hundreds of people who have been exposed to asbestos in Western Australia and participate in the Program.
“The role of the Clinic has become a support for the participants, and their families, over the years. When they visit the Clinic on an annual basis they become familiar not only with the Clinic and our research, role but they also form a connection with the staff,” she said.
“We still have family groups coming to their appointments together. In fact the first two participants on the Program in June, 1990 were two sisters who were children in Wittenoom and they still attend annually together.
“Many participants still come in for their appointments even though they have lost loved ones to an asbestos-related disease,” she said.