Dr. David Tan Boon Harn

Radiation Oncology

Language English, Mandarin Chinese, Cantonese Dialect, Hokkien Dialect

Dr David Tan Boon Harn is Medical Director and Senior Radiation Oncologist at Asian Alliance Radiation & Oncology (AARO), a private Singapore Radiation and Oncology group focusing on the use of advanced technologies to treat cancer.

He has more than 15 years of clinical experience and specializes in the treatment of Gynaecological Cancers (Cervix, Uterus & Ovarian), Lung cancers, Gastrointestinal cancers (Oesophagus, Stomach & Colorectal), and Hepatobiliary cancers (Liver, Pancreas & Gallbladder).

His clinical expertise is in the use of stereotactic radiosurgery and stereotactic body radiation therapy (SRS/SBRT), a highly targeted and ablative radiation treatment to treat primary and metastatic tumours in only 1-5 sessions. He is also fellowship- trained in Brachytherapy for gynaecological cancers.

Dr Tan is dual-trained in Chemotherapy and Radiotherapy, and well-versed with all modern radiation technologies including 3D conformal external beam radiotherapy (3D-CRT), Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT), Image Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT), Volumetric Arc Therapy (VMAT), Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRS), Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy (SBRT), Deep Inspiration Breath Hold Radiotherapy, Gynaecology (cervix and endometrium) image-guided brachytherapy.

Dr. Tan graduated from the National University of Singapore in 2005 and commenced training in Radiation Oncology at the National Cancer Centre Singapore (NCCS) in 2007.

In 2011, Dr. Tan received the Health and Manpower Development (HMDP) Award for Advanced Training in Clinical Oncology in the UK. There, at the Mount Vernon Cancer Cancer in Middlesex, he obtained advanced training in general oncology and further subspecialized in the above tumour sites. He also trained under renowned experts in stereotactic radiosurgery and brachytherapy.

He obtained his Fellowship in Clinical Oncology from the Royal College of Radiologists in the UK (FRCR) in 2013 and was admitted as a Fellow of the Academy of Medicine, Singapore (FAMS) in Radiation Oncology in 2014.

Prior to joining AARO, Dr. Tan was a Consultant Radiation Oncologist at the National Cancer Centre Singapore (NCCS). During his 10 years of service in the public sector, he was responsible for setting up the Liver and Pancreas SBRT programs, and oversaw their development from protocol development to patient enrolment and subsequently to treatment of increasingly complex cases such as multiple liver metastases and portal vein thrombosis in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). He is also currently co-investigator in an international IAEA-led trial comparing SBRT with transarterial chemoembolization (TACE) in unresectable HCC.

Dr. Tan is the Singapore National Project Coordinator for the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Regional Project 6085, which aims to Enhance Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy for Frequent Cancers in the Asia-Pacific Region. After establishing Singapore as one of the regional training hubs in Asia- Pacific, Dr. Tan conducted the first regional training course of the project in NCCS in 2016, which was attended by participants from 17 member states. He is also council member of the Federation of Asian Organizations for Radiation Oncology (FARO), which is a non-profit scientific organization comprising national radiation oncology societies in Asia to improve the level of radiotherapy in the region.

On the local front, Dr. Tan serves as Chair of the Radiation Oncology Sub-section of the Singapore Radiological Society (SRS) and is also a fellow in the Academy of Medicine. He has been part of the organizing committee for RadiologyAsia 2015 and 2017, which are regional radiology meetings held bi-annually in conjunction with the SRS Annual Scientific Meetings. As chair of the SRS radiation oncology subsection, Dr. Tan organizes annual scientific dinnersymposiums for the local oncology community to update them on the latest advances in radiotherapy in common tumour sites such as liver, pancreas and prostate malignancies, and on latest technologies such as proton therapy. Dr. Tan also held position as Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School where he hosted and supervised medical students for clinical attachments at NCCS, and was clinical lecturer at the Nanyang Polytechnic School of Radiation Therapy where he gave lectures to budding radiation therapists.

Associated Treatments

Stereotactic Radiosurgery
Stereotactic Body Radiosurgery
Image guided radiation therapy
Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy
Volumetric Arc Radiation Therapy
Proton Beam Therapy


What Is the Prognostic Value of the (Y)pN Status After Chemoradiotherapy in Rectal Cancer?
Source: Springer, published: 07 April 2018

The Promise of Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy – Next phase of integration into oncological practice.
Source: Journal of Clinical Oncol, published 6 September 2017

Assessing dose contribution to pelvic lymph nodes in intracavitary brachytherapy for cervical cancer.
Source: Journal of Contemporary Brachytherapy, published 9 August 2017

Squamous-cell carcinoma of the anus: Progress in radiotherapy treatment Rob Glynne Jones, David Tan, Robert Hughes, Peter Hoskin
Source: Nature Reviews of Clinical Oncology, published 27 January 2016

Urological reconstruction after pelvic oncological surgery: A single institution experience
Source: Asian Journal of Surgery, 2016

Post-operative Chemoradiation for Rectal Cancer
Source: Springer-Verlag London, published 1 January 2014

How can we determine the best neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy regimen for rectal cancer?
Source: Future Medicine, published 18 February 2015

How to Select for Preoperative Short-course Radiotherapy, While Considering Long- course Chemoradiotherapy or Immediate Surgery, and Who Benefits?
Source: ResearchGate, European Oncology & Haematology, 2014

Pelvic MRI for Guiding Treatment Decisions in Rectal Cancer Rob Glynne-Jones, David Tan B H, Vicky Goh
Source: National Library of Medicine United States, 2014

But some Neoadjuvant Schedules are more Equal than Others David Tan B H, Glynne-Jones Rob
Source: Journal of Clinical Oncology, published 1 April 2013


Previous appointments
Council Member of the Federation of Asian Organizations for Radiation Oncology
Organizing Committee for RadiologyAsia, 2015 and 2017
Chair of the Singapore Radiological Society
Council member of the College of Radiology Singapore
Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School
Clinical Lecturer at the Nanyang Polytechnic School of Radiation Therapy

Fellowships and Accreditations