About

Dr Paul Licina

MBBS(Hons) FRACS(Orth) FAOA Adjunct Associate Professor (QUT)

Dr Paul Licina is a spinal surgeon based at the Brisbane Private Hospital on Wickham Terrace, Brisbane. He qualified as an orthopaedic surgeon in Queensland and then undertook further spinal training under world-renowned spinal surgeon John Webb in Nottingham, England.

Upon return, he worked in the public system as a consultant surgeon in the Spinal Injuries unit at the Princess Alexandra Hospital, and in the Scoliosis Unit at the Mater Childrens Hospital. He now works exclusively in private practice at the Brisbane Private Hospital.

Although his primary interest is degenerative spinal conditions, in particular back pain, he treats all conditions of the spine.

Despite his busy private practice, he devotes considerable time to research and education. He helped establish the AO Spine Centre of Excellence in Brisbane and oversaw its incorporation into the QUT Orthopaedic and Trauma Research Group, and has been granted the title of Adjunct Professor by the QUT. More recently he has established the Brisbane Private Hospital Spine Research Group.

He has travelled extensively both nationally and internationally as faculty for various spine courses and conferences. He has published a number of papers, and was involved in ground-breaking research involving spinal cord injury, being part of the team that performed the world’s first transplant of specialized olfactory cells into the spinal cord of a paralysed patient in an attempt to develop a technique to promote spinal cord recovery. His research interests involve computer-assisted image-guided surgery, less invasive spinal surgery including bone graft alternatives, and optimising postoperative spinal rehabilitation.

Download a detailed CV including qualifications, published papers and more.

Visiting Practitioners

Dr Angus Forbes

MBBS, DRCOG, GDOEH, FRACGP, FAFOEM
Occupational Physician

Dr Angus Forbes is a Specialist Occupational Physician. He has more than 15 years experience in the field of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. He started his medical career with the British Army where he initially qualified as a General Practitioner. He transferred to the Australian Army in 2008, before pursuing a specialist career in Brisbane.

Dr Forbes has provided medical care in a diverse range of settings, and in a number of different countries. He has always enjoyed being part of multidisciplinary medical teams, working closely with patients and their families as well as physiotherapists, rehabilitation providers and employers. He places a high value on working with his patients to assist them in understanding their diagnosis and treatment options as well as planning the management of their conditions into the future.

Dr Forbes holds Fellowships with the Australasian Faculty of Occupational and Environmental Medicine and the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners. He is a member of the Australian and New Zealand Society of Occupational Medicine, and the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. He also holds qualifications in both Aviation and Dive Medicine.

Dr Benjamin Manion

MBBS, FFARCSI, FANZCA, FFPMANZCA
Pain Medicine Specialist Physician

Dr Ben Manion is a Specialist Pain Medicine Physician and Rehabilitation Specialist.  He has expertise in a variety of rehabilitation areas with interests in post-surgical rehabilitation, interventional pain medicine, and the evolving nature and management of chronic pain.

He is on the Queensland Board of the Faculty of Medicine, and is actively involved in furthering knowledge in his specialty.

In addition to his clinical work, Dr Manion has been the Chief Medical Officer for a number of international sporting events for many years; acting as an advisor to state authorities on formation of health protocols for sporting events.

Dr Manion prides himself on understanding and compassionate care.

Surgical Team

Dr Mark Munro

Assistant Surgeon

Dr Mark Munro is a graduate of the University of Queensland Medical School. Following graduation, he spent three years at the Royal Brisbane Hospital undertaking further training, during which time he also served as Acting Superintendent in regional Queensland hospitals. He has worked as Dr Licina’s assistant surgeon for over 20 years and has a detailed understanding of all spinal procedures.

Dr Ben Loh

Anaesthetist

Dr Ben Loh graduated in medicine at the University of Queensland in 1989. His interest in the specialty of anaesthesia developed early in his career. As an anaesthetic registrar, he worked in Redcliffe Hospital, Queen Elizabeth Hospital (Hong Kong) and Maryborough Hospital before completing his training at the Royal Brisbane Hospital. Dr Loh works with Dr Licina for half of his surgeries and has done so for the past 20 years.

Dr David Hill

Anaesthetist

Dr David Hill graduated from medicine at the University of Queensland in 1989. He worked in North Queensland for 7 years, which included time as a GP Anaesthetist and time with the Royal Flying Doctors Service. Dr Hill works with Dr Licina for half of his surgeries and has done so for the past 20 years.

Clinical and Administrative Team

Manuela

Financial Controller
Bachelor of Business (Accounting) | Queensland University of Technology

As a management team member, Manuela is an integral part of Dr Licina’s vision of a multidisciplinary practice. She is responsible for the design and management of all financial systems in the practice to maximise the efficiency of patient care by the SpinePlus health professionals. She is also entrusted with auditing and reviewing all accounting procedures.

In addition to Manuela’s core responsibilities, she consults on all aspects of the medical practice; helping to resolve issues and streamline administrative processes, aimed at enhancing the patient experience.

Manuela joined SpinePlus in 2013 with 21 years of experience in the corporate sector behind her. Graduating with a Bachelor of Business (majoring in Accountancy), Manuela worked primarily in Suncorp’s Accounting Operations Division where she maintained the fixed asset register, payroll system, and fulfilled aspects of taxation requirements for the company.

Xanthe

Medicolegal Coordinator
Bachelor of Laws (Hons) | University Of Queensland Bachelor of Exercise and Sports Science | Griffith University
Bachelor of Physiotherapy / University of Queensland (due to graduate 2025)

Xanthe is responsible for the coordination and management of all the medicolegal processes and documents at SpinePlus. She works closely with legal professionals and insurers to ensure that Dr Licina’s medicolegal appointments and reports are prepared and completed in a timely and efficient manner. Xanthe graduated from the University of Queensland with a Bachelor of Laws (Honours 2B) in 2016. After making a decision to change her career and enter the health services sector, Xanthe is now studying a Bachelor of Exercise Science (pre- Physiotherapy) with the view towards completing a Masters in Physiotherapy. She has always been interested in human movement and injury rehabilitation. The satisfaction of helping people recover from injury and the learning opportunities that each person offers explains why Xanthe was drawn to this multi-faceted role at SpinePlus.

Bachelor of Laws (Hons) | University Of Queensland
Bachelor of Exercise and Sports Science | Griffith University

Bachelor of Physiotherapy / University of Queensland (due to graduate 2025)

Kathleen

Clinical Nurse
Bachelor of Nursing | Australian Catholic University

Kathleen is a clinical nurse for SpinePlus, working directly with Dr Licina. She is involved in assessing patients’ conditions, supporting patients through their surgery, and liaising with other specialists and the hospital. She has been with SpinePlus since 2019, gaining vast knowledge and experience in differing spine pathology and how to best manage them. Kathleen graduated from The Australian Catholic University with a Bachelor of Nursing. She has had 12 years’ experience as a nurse and has extensive knowledge as a radiology nurse, assisting radiologists with interventional procedures such as CT guided injections, biopsies, peripheral and central lines, and exercise stress tests.

Shanae

Clinical Assistant
Bachelor of Clinical Exercise Physiology | Queensland University of Technology

Shanae is responsible for the coordination and management of patients undergoing consultations and with Dr Licina. She also helps patients with navigating their surgical journey, ensuring they feel supported and collecting patient feedback to further improve SpinePlus’ processes. Her role also includes the implementation of the SpinePlus patient experience application. Shanae has completed a Bachelor of Clinical Exercise Physiology at the Queensland University of Technology. Her previous role as a personal trainer has given her tremendous experience in working closely with patients, giving her a personable and empathetic demeanour.

Monique

Medical Receptionist
Bachelor of Business (Entrepreneurship) | Due to graduate 2023 from Griffith University

Monique’s role involves liaising with GP practices and managing all patient appointment requests, assisting the clinical team with the triaging process, and ensuring that patients are prepared for their appointments with Dr Licina. She is the first point of contact for most patients and creates a warm and welcoming experience. Monique is currently completing a Bachelor of Business at Griffith University. During her time at SpinePlus she has moved from a junior to a senior role, actively growing her understanding of the Australian healthcare system and spine pathologies treated by Dr Licina.

Jacqueline

Medical Receptionist

Jacqueline role involves liaising with GP practices and managing all patient appointment requests, assisting the clinical team with the triaging process, and ensuring that patients are prepared for their appointments with Dr Licina. She is the first point of contact for most patients and creates a warm and welcoming experience. Jacquie has extensive knowledge and experience of the private health insurance industry and is very helpful to patients navigating their private health insurance cover.

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Chelsea

Senior Administration Assistant
Bachelor of Health Sciences | University of Queensland

Chelsea completed her Bachelor of Health Sciences in 2018 as part of the Provisional Entry pathway for the Doctor of Medicine Programme at the University of Queensland. She first joined SpinePlus as a medical receptionist in 2018 whilst working on designing pathways and protocols for surgical patients. More recently, Chelsea has worked as a Clinical Assistant for Dr Licina, helping patients navigate their surgical journey. This involved the implementation of a data-derived triage process to direct patients with spine pathology to the appropriate clinician. With Chelsea’s wealth of knowledge, she now works as part of the administrative team and assists in research conducted at BackSpace rehabilitation clinic.

Tanya

Business Manager
Bachelor of Commerce (Human Resources) | Griffith University

With the ever-evolving nature of how Dr Licina practices medicine to care for his patients, Tanya’s role involves facilitating patient service improvement programmes and designing and implementing new administrative and management systems. Together with the administrative team, Tanya strives to create a productive, welcoming and nurturing environment for patients and their health providers. Tanya ensures optimal staff performance and efficient administrative systems to provide superior patient services.

With a Bachelor of Commerce Degree (majoring in Human Resources) from Griffith University and over 25 years of experience in the Human Resources field, Tanya also oversees staff recruitment, training, development, and counselling in the practice.