Rarawa Beach

About Us

Why a team?

Having bariatric surgery, and the changes that come with this, is a major life event. It can have a ripple effect into every aspect of your life. What you are looking to undergo is more than just an operation. Prior to surgery, we are going to ask you to change. This change is required for you to realise the most from this experience, but change can be hard. Our team of health professionals are here to support you on this journey and make it as effective and safe as possible. We are privileged to partner with you in this period of your life.

The team approach


The operation is central in your journey and this will be performed to a high standard with a focus on quality and safety. Keeping you well during your operation is the role of the anaesthetist. Between them, they will look after your medical needs prior to surgery and during your hospital stay.


The role of the psychologist in your journey can be different for everyone. For some, it may be a one-off meeting to ensure you have realistic expectations about what surgery will mean in your life and the challenges that can occur. For others it may be completing a course of therapy before your operation to ensure you are in the best place possible to make long-lasting behavioural change and get the outcomes you are hoping for. Psychology services are available at any point along the program and you will be provided with a complementary session 9-months post surgery.


The dietitian supports you prior to surgery with healthy lifestyle changes that make surgery safer for you and helps set you up for your new version of health. After surgery it is essential you meet your nutritional needs through a variety foods, fluid and lifelong supplements. Your dietitian supports and monitors these every step of the way and will continue to until two years after your operation.


Our Clinical Nurse Specialist is a valuable resource available to you and will be the first clinician you meet. She will introduce you to the program and discus your health history and needs. She will assist you through your journey and answers questions and concerns along the way and provides several consults at various stages. This allows us to plan your care to ensure you have the best outcome with surgery. This support, before and after, helps facilitate the transition to your new way of living after surgery.


The clinical nurse manager and administration staff assists you as you flow through the program. We are here to make appointments with your surgeon or allied health team. We also are here in the background making sure that you are progressing as you should and that you are staying on track with your appointments.

Meet the team

Sean Liddle


Sean is a New Zealand trained General Surgeon specialising in upper gastrointestinal, bariatric and minimally invasive surgery, working for Te Whatu Ora Te Tai Tokerau and in private practice.

Born and raised in New Zealand, Sean did his general surgery training throughout New Zealand. On completing this, he spent three years in Calgary, Canada, specialising in bariatric and upper GI surgery.  Sean is well versed in both primary and revisional bariatric surgery and also offers non-surgical weight loss treatments. He is experienced in all aspects of upper gastrointestinal surgery, gallbladder surgery, hernia repair and gastroscopy.

When not working or being a dad, Sean enjoys going for a run, a surf or playing a round of golf.

Ants Carrie

Specialist Anaesthetist

Ants is a is a fellow of the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists (ANZCA) having completed his specialist training in Auckland. Following this he completed training in pain medicine at John Hunter Hospital NSW and is a fellow of the ANZCA Faculty of Pain Medicine. He is a full-time consultant anaesthetist in the department of anaesthesia, Whangarei Hospital. His clinical interests are whole person medicine, bariatric anaesthesia, acute and chronic pain treatment and regional anaesthesia.

Ants has been drawn to northland life since he did his first medical placement here in 2006. He has subsequently returned long-term following completion of specialist training. Outside of work he is a painter, musician, trail runner and surfer.

Jessica de Wit​


Jessica is a New Zealand trained Dietitian. Jessica has experience in many areas of adult dietetics including Surgical, Intensive Care, Orthopaedics and Bariatrics here in Te Tai Tokerau. She is passionate about supporting her clients to reach their health goals through an evidence based, holistic and a client centred approach. Jessica loves cooking, running and anything outdoorsy – rain, hail or shine!

Dana Antunovich​


Dana is a Health Psychologist and completed her training at the University of Auckland. She has a background in working alongside people facing diverse physical and mental health challenges. Dana is committed to support you towards the outcomes you want to achieve. Her approach is holistic and she will tailor strategies to your needs. She was born and raised in Te Tai Tokerau and enjoys spending time with whānau, especially at the beach!

Sarah Fallon​

Clinical Nurse Specialist

Sarah was born in Auckland and has worked in a number of clinical settings in senior nursing roles. Sarah has witnessed the positive impacts bariatric surgery can have for people and feels privileged to be involved in making this specialty a success in Northland. Sarah and her family moved to Whangarei in 2017 and enjoy the “laid-back” lifestyle that comes with living in Northland.

Melissa Liddle​


Melissa is a Canadian trained Registered Nurse specialising in surgical nursing working both in private practice as a clinical nurse manager and at Kensington Hospital. Being internationally trained and having worked in a number of different clinical settings has resulted in a large knowledge base and awareness of the breadth of nursing and healthcare. As a personal and community health advocate, Melissa is thrilled to be a part of this team and see the positive influence it has in Northland.


Clinic Consults

Where able and appropriate, we are happy to offer consultations via Zoom or phone.

In person clinic appointments are available at:


Northland Surgical and Endoscopy
78 Western Hills Drive



Kaitaia Hospital
29 Redan Rd

Endoscopy AND Surgery

Endoscopy and Surgery are performed in Whangarei at Kensington Private Hospital. Kensington Private Hospital is Northland’s only private surgical hospital. Kensington Private Hospital opened in 2001 and offers a relaxing environment which blends modern facilities with traditional personal attention. The hospital has five operating theatres performing 4,000 procedures per year. Guests staying overnight or longer are accommodated in the spacious and comfortable Inpatient Suite. A Day Stay Unit provides an area for day case patients to relax and recover before travelling home.

Kensington Private Hospital
12 Kensington Ave