Our mission is to provide a quality health care service that will benefit our patient’s
health and well-being.


Smith Street Practice is a purpose built modern practice located on the corner of Johnston and Smith Street diagonally across from the Tamworth Rural Referral Hospital and NSW Health Pathology.

Our mission is to provide a quality health care service that will benefit our patient’s health and wellbeing.

Smith Street Practice is only minutes away from both the public and private hospitals, local imaging and pathology providers and local bus services. As a commitment to ongoing training of Doctors our practice employs GP registrars who are completing specialised training in General Practice.  They are supervised by the senior doctors at the practice at all times.

In addition we intermittently have medical students attached to the practice.  You may be asked if you are happy if a medical student can sit in on your consultation with the doctor.  You are not under any obligation to say yes.



Dr Carmen Ast

Dr Ast graduated from the University of Sydney in 1988.  She has been in general practice since 1992 and in Tamworth since 1994.  Her particular interests are Women’s Health, Lactation, Medicine of the Older Adult and Chronic Disease Management. She is a qualified Lactation Consultant. Dr Ast consults on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Dr Miriam Grotowski

Dr Grotowski graduated from the University of Newcastle in 1989. She has been in general practice in Tamworth since 1991. Her particular interests are Mental Health, Eating Disorders, Paediatrics and Sexual Health. Miriam works as a Senior Lecturer for the University of Newcastle Department of Rural Health, supporting medical students and junior Doctors who are training in the Tamworth region. She completed her Diploma in Psychiatry in 2002. Dr Grotowski consults on Tuesdays, Fridays and alternate Thursdays.

Dr Gillian Rawlings

Dr Rawlings graduated from the University of NSW in 1982.  She worked in general practice in Sydney for eight years.  She moved to Tamworth in 1992 and has worked at Tamworth Base Hospital.  Her particular interests are Asthma, Palliative Care and Women’s Health.  Dr Rawlings consults on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

Dr Elizabeth Leprince

Dr Leprince graduated from the Australian National University in 2008.  She moved to Tamworth in 2009 to work at the Tamworth Base Hospital. Dr Leprince finished her General Practice training in 2014. Her interests are in rural health, family medicine and sexual health. Dr Leprince works Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Fridays.

Dr Samantha Baker

Dr Baker graduated with a Bachelor of Medicine at the University of Newcastle, worked at Tamworth Base Hospital. Dr Baker topped the state in her Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) fellowship clinical exam. Dr Baker is interested in all aspects of general practice, including women’s health, preventative medicine and chronic diseases. Dr Baker consults Monday and Thursday.

Dr Lauren Cone

Dr Cone graduated from UNSW in 2007 and has worked in the North West region since 2008.  Lauren completed all of her junior Doctor training in and around Tamworth. Her interests are rural health,mental health, women’s and children’s health, as well as medical education.  Lauren is currently working as the Clinical Dean in Tamworth for the University of Newcastle Department for Rural Health, supporting medical students and junior doctors who are training in the Tamworth region.

Dr Sally Coulton

Dr Coulton was born in Warialda and graduated from the University of Newcastle in 2008. After completing her junior doctor years at Tamworth Base Hospital, Sally moved to Sydney to gain further experience in paediatrics and then completed her general practice training. She is interested in all aspects of general practice, but particularly likes women’s health, family planning and paediatrics. She recently moved back to Tamworth with her husband and daughter and is enjoying settling back into the country lifestyle.

Dr Amy Burraston

Dr Burraston graduated from the University of New South Wales in 2007. Originally from Quirindi, she has worked in Orange, Sydney, Northern Territory and Queensland before returning closer to home. Amy also works as a Senior Lecturer for the University Of Newcastle Department of Rural Health teaching and supporting medical students.

Dr Emma Madams

Emma completed a Nursing Degree in 2003 and worked at the Tamworth Base Hospital the following year. Inspired by her colleagues, she relocated to Newcastle and undertook a Medical Degree, which she completed in 2014.  She began GP training and has worked in far north Queensland, including Cairns and the Torres Strait Islands.  She is passionate about Indigenous Health, as well as chronic disease management and women’s and children’s health.

Dr Jessica Chapman

Dr Chapman graduated from University of Notre Dame Sydney in 2015. After completing her junior doctor years in Sydney she and her husband made the tree change to Tamworth. Since then she has been working in Palliative care, oncology and general practice. Dr Chapman now enjoys the variety of General practice from paediatrics to chronic disease management.

Dr Siobhan Ballesty

Dr Ballesty graduated with Distinction from the University of Newcastle in 2011, having spent two years of her training in Tamworth Base Hospital. She completed her junior doctor years in the Hunter/New England region, then spent time working in obstetrics and gynaecology in Newcastle, Maitland, Canberra and Sydney. During these hospital postings she completed a Master in Reproductive Medicine through UNSW and a Diploma of Obstetrics (DRANZCOG).

Jo-anne Bacon

Jo-anne joined The Smith Street Practice team as Practice Manager in 2005, completing both Certificate IV and Diploma of Practice Management through the University of New England in 2007/08 and is a current member of the Australian Association of Practice Managers (AAPM). In 2011, Jo-anne took out the prestigious AAPM NSW Practice Manager of the Year title. This award was and is in recognition for the quality of leadership skills delivered to all Doctors, Nursing, administration and ancillary staff.  

Jodie Riley

Jodie is a registered Clinical Psychologist with over 20 years of experience providing therapy and health care to community members. She has worked primarily with adults and adolescents who may be experiencing mental health difficulties such as depression, anxiety and post traumatic or complex trauma.  Jodie also specialises in working with families who may be experiencing difficulties, especially relating to pre or post-natal depression and anxiety, and adjusting to difficult life transitions such as adolescence.

Marian McKenzie

Marian is a Registered Nurse who has many years of general nursing experience, and post-graduate qualifications in mental health nursing. Since commencing work at Smith Street Practice in 2009 she has done further professional development and became a Credentialed Mental Health Nurse in 2015. Marian works with the doctors and nurses in the practice to provide mental health care coordination, education and support to patients and their families/ carers.

Most of the doctors have children and work part-time. There is always a doctor at the surgery during the previously mentioned surgery hours.

However, although you may choose to mainly attend one doctor, in case of an urgent problem requiring immediate attention, you may need to see one of the other doctors, who will of course, have your medical records available.

Our General Practice provides holistic comprehensive care across the age spectrum, travel vaccines, healthy children’s checks as well as chronic disease including diabetes and heart disease.

We also have a qualified Lactation Consultant.

Smith Street Practice is able to offer mental health support for patients and their families and carers.

The practice has a Credentialed Mental Health Nurse who works with your doctor to perform assessments, provide education and coordinate care between services.

Support and monitoring are also an important part of the role.

From someone simply needing some tips for managing mental health issues, through to complex situations requiring a specialist, the Mental Health Nurse is able to work with you, your doctor and your family to get the help you need.