Dr Marcus Sellars

PhD, PGDipPsych, BBSc
Research Fellow


Dr Marcus Sellars is a Research Fellow (Qualitative Researcher) working on the MRFF funded TORCH project within the Department of Health Services Research and Policy (DHSRP). He completed his PhD at the University of Sydney (Faculty of Medicine) in 2019. The overarching aim of his thesis was to improve advance care planning (ACP) for people with chronic kidney disease and involved both qualitative (semi-structured interviews, thematic synthesis of qualitative studies) and economic evaluation (cost-effectiveness analysis) methods. Marcus has training in psychology and expertise in qualitative research methods.

Prior to joining ANU, Marcus was a researcher at QUT where he led a qualitative study of Victorian doctors involved in Voluntary Assisted Dying since it became legal in Victoria in 2019. In previous years, he was Research Manager at Advance Care Planning Australia at the Austin Hospital in Melbourne (funded primarily by the Federal government). The broader aims of the program were to improve the delivery of ACP for all Australians and his role was to conduct research and evaluations of ACP programs in a variety of settings (acute, aged care, community) and using a variety of approaches (surveys, qualitative, systematic reviews, health economics, medical audits) and perspectives (health, law, ethics).

The TORCH project will provide policy makers with robust evidence on the appropriateness of existing tools and development of new tools to measure and value health in children. Marcus’ role is to lead the collection and analysis of qualitative data in this program of work and collaborate on other aspects of the program of research. He will work as part of an interdisciplinary and international team of academics and policy makers on the MRFF grant and undertake research to understand appropriateness of existing and develop new tools and methods to measure and value health in children, as well as key stakeholder’s views and framing of the solutions.


Research interests

  • Person-centred care
  • Advance care planning
  • Shared decision-making
  • Care at the end of life
  • Chronic disease
  • Social research methods


  • Willmott, L, White, B & Sellars, M 2022, 'Participating doctors' perspectives on the regulation of voluntary assisted dying in Victoria: a qualitative study (Reply)', Medical Journal of Australia, vol. 216, no. 4, p. 209.
  • Buck, K, Nolte, L, Sellars, M et al. 2021, 'Advance care directive prevalence among older Australians and associations with person-level predictors and quality indicators', Health Expectations, vol. 24, no. 4, pp. 1312-1325.
  • Sellars, M, Tran, J, Nolte, L et al. 2021, 'Public knowledge, preferences and experiences about medical substitute decision-making: A national cross-sectional survey', BMJ Supportive & Palliative Care - BMJ Journals, vol. online, pp. 1-10.
  • Detering, K, Sinclair, C, Buck, K et al. 2021, 'Organisational and advance care planning program characteristics associated with advance care directive completion: a prospective multicentre cross-sectional audit among health and residential aged care services caring for older Australians', BMC Health Services Research, vol. 21, no. 1, pp. 1-12.
  • Sellars, M, Tacey, M, McDougall, R et al. 2021, 'Support for and willingness to be involved in voluntary assisted dying: a multisite, cross-sectional survey study of clinicians in Victoria, Australia', Internal Medicine Journal, vol. 51, no. 10, pp. 1619-1628.
  • Sellars, M, White , B, Yates, P et al. 2021, 'Knowledge of end of life law: A cross-sectional survey of General Practitioners working in aged care', Australasian Journal on Ageing, vol. 2022, no. 41, pp. 265-273.
  • Rodi, H, Detering, K, Sellars, M et al. 2021, 'Exploring advance care planning awareness, experiences, and preferences of people with cancer and support people: an Australian online cross-sectional study', Supportive Care in Cancer, vol. 2021, no. 29, pp. 3677-3688.
  • Sinclair, C, Sellars, M, Buck, K et al. 2021, 'Association between region of birth and advance care planning documentation among migrant communities in Australia: A multi-center audit study', Journals of Gerontology Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences, vol. 76, no. 1, pp. 109-120.
  • Detering, K, Sellars, M, Kelly , H et al. 2021, 'Prevalence of advance care planning documentation and self-reported uptake in older Australians with a cancer diagnosis', Journal of Geriatric Oncology, vol. 12, no. 2021, pp. 274-281.
  • Valentine, L, Grace , D, Pryor, I et al. 2021, '"When I'm Thinking Straight, I Can Put Things in Place for When I'm Not." | Exploring the Use of Advance Statements in First-Episode Psychosis Treatment: Young People, Clinician, and Carer Perspectives', Community Mental Health Journal, vol. 57, no. 2021, pp. 18-28.
  • Willmott, L, White, B, Sellars, M et al. 2021, 'Participating doctors perspectives on the regulation of voluntary assisted dying in Victoria: a qualitative study', Medical Journal of Australia, vol. 215, no. 3, pp. 125-129.
  • McDougall, R, Hayes , B, Sellars, M et al. 2020, ''This is uncharted water for all of us': challenges anticipated by hospital clinicians when voluntary assisted dying becomes legal in Victoria', Australian Health Review, vol. 44, no. 3, pp. 399-404.
  • Sellars, M, Detering, K, Sinclair, C et al. 2020, 'Personal and interpersonal factors and their associations with advance care planning documentation: A cross-sectional survey of older adults in Australia', Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, vol. 59, no. 6, pp. 1212-1222.
  • Teng, C, Loy, C, Sellars, M et al. 2020, 'Making decisions about long-term institutional care placement among people with dementia and their caregivers: Systematic Review of Qualitative Studies', Gerontologist, The, vol. 60, no. 4, pp. 329-346.
  • Macleod, A, Nair , D, Ilbahar, E et al. 2020, 'Identifying barriers and facilitators to implementing advance care planning in prisons: a rapid literature review', Health and Justice, vol. 8, no. 1, pp. 1-11.
  • Buck, K, Nolte, L, Kelly , H et al. 2020, 'Challenges in obtaining research ethics and governance approvals for an Australian national intersector, multisite audit study', Health Services Research, vol. 44, no. 5, pp. 799-805.
  • Detering, K, Buck, K, Ruseckaite, R et al. 2019, 'Prevalence and correlates of advance care directives among older Australians accessing health and residential aged care services: multicentre audit study', BMJ Open, vol. 9, no. 2019.
  • Sellars, M, Morton, R, Clayton, J et al. 2019, 'Case-control study of end-of-life treatment preferences and costs following advance care planning for adults with end-stage kidney disease', Nephrology, vol. 24, no. 2, pp. 148-154.
  • Sellars, M, Simpson, J, Kelly , H et al. 2019, 'Volunteer Involvement in Advance Care Planning: A Scoping Review', Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, vol. 57, no. 6, pp. 1166-1175.
  • Moore, M, Detering, K, Low, T et al. 2019, 'Doctors' perspectives on adhering to advance care directives when making medical decisions for patients: an Australian interview study', BMJ Open, vol. 9, no. 10.
  • Buck, K, Detering, K, Pollard , A et al. 2019, 'Concordance Between Self-Reported Completion of Advance Care Planning Documentation and Availability of Documentation in Australian Health and Residential Aged Care Services', Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, vol. 58, no. 2, pp. 264-274.
  • Sellars, M, Clayton, J, Detering, K et al. 2019, 'Costs and outcomes of advance care planning and end-of-life care for older adults with end-stage kidney disease: a person-centred decision analysis', PLOS ONE (Public Library of Science), vol. 14, no. 5.
  • Morton, R & Sellars, M 2019, 'From Patient-Centered to Person-Centered Care for Kidney Diseases', Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, vol. 14, no. 1, pp. 623-325.
  • Detering, K, Buck, K, Sellars, M et al. 2019, 'Prospective multicentre cross-sectional audit among older Australians accessing health and residential aged care services: protocol for a national advance care directive prevalence study
    ', BMJ Open, vol. 9, no. 10.
  • Sellars, M, Chung , O, Nolte, L et al. 2019, 'Perspectives of people with dementia and carers on advance care planning and end-of-life care: A systematic review and thematic synthesis of qualitative studies', Palliative Medicine, vol. 33, no. 3, pp. 274-290.
  • Sellars, M, Clayton, J, Morton, R et al. 2018, 'An Interview Study of Patient and Caregiver Perspectives on Advance Care Planning in ESRD', American Journal of Kidney Diseases, vol. 71, no. 2, pp. 216-224.
  • Nguyen, K, Sellars, M, Agar , M et al. 2017, 'An economic model of advance care planning in Australia: a cost-effective way to respect patient choice', BMC Health Services Research, vol. 17, no. 1.
  • Detering, K, Carter , R, Sellars, M et al. 2017, 'Prospective comparative effectiveness cohort study comparing two models of advance care planning provision for Australian community aged care clients', BMJ Supportive & Palliative Care - BMJ Journals, vol. 7, no. 4, pp. 486-494.
  • Sellars, M, Tong , A, Luckett, T et al. 2017, 'Clinicians' Perspectives on Advance Care Planning for Patients With CKD in Australia: An Interview Study', American Journal of Kidney Diseases, vol. 70, no. 3, pp. 315-323.
  • Luckett, T, Spencer , L, Morton, R et al. 2017, 'Advance care planning in chronic kidney disease: A survey of current practice in Australia', Nephrology, vol. 22, no. 2, pp. 139-149.
  • Sellars, M, Fullam, R, O'Leary , C et al. 2017, 'Australian Psychiatrists' Support for Psychiatric Advance Directives: Responses to a Hypothetical Vignette', Psychiatry, Psychology and Law, vol. 24, no. 1, pp. 61-73.