Care at NUH

Doctor Details

Find a Doctor
Doctor Detail

A/Prof John Tam Kit Chung

Photo of A/Prof John Tam Kit Chung


  • Head of Division & Senior Consultant, Thoracic Surgery, Department of Cardiac, Thoracic and Vascular Surgery, National University Heart Centre, Singapore
  • Senior Consultant, Division of Surgical Oncology, National University Cancer Institute, Singapore
  • Associate Professor, Department of Surgery, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore


BSc (Honors), MD, MSc, MEd, FRCSC (Thoracic Surgery)


Cardiothoracic Surgery

Clinical Disciplines/Programmes:

Cardiothoracic Surgery (Heart), Lung Surgery, Minimally Invasive Thoracic Surgery, Surgical Oncology (Thoracic Surgery)

Special Interests:

Chest wall, Chest wall deformities or pectus excavatum, Diaphragm, Fluid or infection within the pleural cavity, General Thoracic Surgery, Hyperhydrosis, Lung, Lung cancer, Mediastinal cancer, Mediastinum, Minimally Invasive Thoracic Surgery, Pleura, Pneumothorax, Thoracic trauma, Treatment of end stage lung disease, Tumours within the chest, Uniportal Video Assisted Thoracic Surgery


Associate Professor John Tam is a Senior Consultant and the founding Head of Thoracic Surgery at the National University Heart Centre, Singapore (NUHCS). He is also an Associate Professor with tenure at the National University of Singapore (NUS) Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine.

A/Prof Tam specialises in performing minimally invasive single-port keyhole surgery using advanced techniques in Uniportal Video-Assisted Thoracoscopic Surgery (UVATS). He has been performing Uniportal VATS lobectomy since June 25, 2009; from then onwards, thousands of patients have benefitted from this technique. A/Prof Tam has achieved excellence in enhanced recovery protocols, pain reduction, and quality of life after surgery to maximise patients' well-being and comfort. He leads a high performance team of thoracic surgeons with excellent surgical outcomes, and is passionate with educating the new generation of thoracic surgeons in Singapore and Asia.

A/Prof Tam has many research publications in top high-impact international-refereed journals, including Science, Nature, Cell, Immunity, New England Journal of Medicine, Annals of Thoracic Surgery and top journals in the field of Thoracic Surgery. He is Chairman of the Cardio-Thoracic Surgery Residency Advisory Committee in Ministry of Health, Singapore. He is also a member of various committees in Ministry of Health, Singapore. He holds multiple leadership appointments within the National University Health System (NUHS) and National University of Singapore.

A/Prof Tam is a passionate educator. He has a proven track record of leadership and mentorship in higher education. He was Associate of the Centre of Medical Education at NUS, and was a lead faculty of numerous faculty development and pedagogical development workshops and programs. He was Faculty Facilitator by invitation for five courses in the Harvard Medical International-NUS “Essentials for Clinician Teachers” series. He was the Director of Undergraduate Medical Education in both the Department of Surgery and the Department of Cardiac, Thoracic, and Vascular Surgery (CTVS) in 2006 to 2011, during which he successfully led major reforms of the entire undergraduate curriculum in surgery. He has been Core Examiner of the FRCS Cardio-Thoracic Surgery (CTS) exit examination in Singapore held jointly with Royal college of Edinburgh and College of Hong Kong since 2007. He is Director of the Advanced Minimally Invasive Thoracic Surgery Fellowship Program in the National University Hospital (NUH), and Chairman of the Program Evaluation Committee in the Cardio-Thoracic Surgery Residency Program in NUHS. He is Core Faculty of both the Cardio-Thoracic Surgery and General Surgery residency programs in NUHS.

A/Prof Tam was awarded with the Public Healthcare Clinician Special Recognition in 2013. He was awarded the SPRING Singapore Excellent Service Gold Awards in 2008 and 2009 in recognition of his excellent service to patients. He was awarded the NUS Medicine Teaching Excellence Award in 2019, and the NUS Faculty Teaching Excellence Award for 3 consecutive years in 2007-2010. A/Prof Tam is recognized as a key opinion leader in lung surgery. He was featured as an invited panel speaker in ChannelNewsAsia Perspective series on lung cancer management in 2017, which was broadcasted and televised across Asia.

A/Prof Tam is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (FRCSC). He was a Clinical Instructor at the Advance Minimally Invasive Thoracic Surgery Center at the University of Pittsburgh in USA. Prior to that, he obtained the Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) degree and underwent Thoracic Surgery training in Canada. He also holds graduate degrees in Master of Education, Master of Science, and Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry with First Class Honors in Canada.


  • NUS Medicine Teaching Excellence Award (2019)
  • NUS Faculty Teaching Excellence Award (2007- 2010)
  • SPRING Singapore Excellent Service Gold Awards (2008 - 2009)

Journals & Publications

1.Human Fetal Dendritic Cells Promote Prenatal T-Cell Immune Suppression Through Arginase-2. Nature 2017;546(7660):662-66. McGovern N, Shin A, Low G, Low D, Duan K, Yao LJ, Msallam R, Low I, Shadan NB, Sumatoh HR, Soon E, Lum J, Mok E, Hubert S, See P, Kunxiang EH, Lee YH, Janela B, Choolani M, Mattar CNZ, Fan Y, Lim TKH, Hong DK, Tan KK, Tam JKC, Schuster C, Elbe-Burger A, Wang XN, Bigley V, Collin M, Haniffa M, Schlitzer A, Poidinger M, Albani S, Larbi A, Newell EW, Chan JKY, Ginhoux F.
2.CD151, a Laminin Receptor showing Increased Expression in Asthmatic Patients, contributes to Airway Hyperresponsiveness through Calcium Signaling. J Allergy Cln Immunol 2017;139(1):82-92. Qiao Y, Tam JK, Tan SS, Tai YK, Chin CY, Stewart AG, Ashman L, Sekiquchi K, Langenbach S, Stelmack G, Halayko AJ, Tran T.
3.Resonance Imaging for Assessing Surgical Resectability of Mediastinal Tumors. Cardiovasc Imaging Asia 2017;1(2):116-123. Ong CC, Seet JE, Tam J, Teo LL. The Diagnostic Utility of Cardiac-Gated Magnetic
4.The Impact of Education Reform: An Asian Medical School's Experience. Ann Acad Med Singapore 2016;45(5):198-204. Koh GCH, Lee JNE, Tam J, Samarasekera D, Koh DR, Wong JEL.
5.Quantitative Accuracy and Lesion Detectability of Low-Dose FDG-PET for Lung Cancer Screening. J Nucl Med 2016;58(3):399-405. Schaefferkoettter JD, Yan J, Sjoholm T, Townsend DW, Conti M,Tam JK, Soo RA, Tham I.
6.An Evaluation of a Student-Led Faculty-Supported Inter-Professional Student Medical-Nursing Education Conference (SMEC). The Singapore Family Physician 2016;42(3):70-74. Kee AR, Durnford JR, Lim FY, Chow EWX, Qian KHO, Prakash P, Tam JKC, Koh GCH.
7.A High-Dimensional Atlas of Human T Cell Diversity Reveals Tissue-Specific Trafficking and Cytokine Signatures. Immunity 2016;45(2):442-56. Wong MT, Ong DEH, Lim, FSH, Teng KWW, McGovern N, Narayanan S, Ho WQ, Cerny D, Tan HKK, Anicete R, Tan BK, Lim TKH, Chan CY, Cheow PC, Lee, SY, Takano A, Tan EH, Tam JKC, Tan EY, Chan JKY, Fink K, Bertoletti A, Ginhoux F, de Lafaille MAC, Newell EW.
8.Are medical students' views of an ideal physician eroding? A study on perceived qualities of a “role model” doctor before and after housemanship and between two cohorts five years apart. Annals of Academy of Medicine, Singapore. Koh GCH, Tam J, Lee JNE, Agrawal N, Koh DR, Samarasekera D, Tan CH.
9.Total Muscle Sparing Uniportal Video-Assisted Thoracic Surgery Lobectomy. Annals of Thoracic Surgery 2013;96(6):1982-6. Tam J& Lim KS.
10.Massive pulmonary tuberculosis cavity misdiagnosed as pneumothorax. Respirology Case Reports 2013;1(2):23-25. Tam J & Lim KS.
11.Anti-malarial drug Artesunate inhibits primary human cultured airway smooth muscle cell proliferation. Am J Respir Cell Mol Biol 2014;50(2):451-458. Tan S, Ong B, Cheng C, Ho W, Tam J, Stewart AG, Harris T, Wong WSF & Tran T.
12.Laminin drives survival signals to promote a contractile smooth muscle phenotype and airway hyperreactivity. FASEB J 2013;27(10):3991-4003. Tran T, Teoh CM, Tam J, Qiao Y, Chin CY, Chong OK, Stewart AG, Harris T, Wong WS, Guan SP, Leung BP, Gerthoffer WT, Unruh H & Halayko AJ.
13.IRF4 Transcription Factor-Dependent CD11b+ Dendritic Cells in Human and Mouse Control Mucosal IL-17 Cytokine Responses. Immunity 2013;38(5):970-983. Schlitzer A, McGovern N, Teo P, Zelante T, Atarashi K, Low D, Ho AW, See P, Shin A, Wasan PS, Hoeffel G, Malleret B, Heiseke A, Chew S, Jardine L, Purvis HA, Hilkens CM, Tam J, Poidinger M, Stanley ER, Krug AB, Renia L, Sivasankar B, Ng LG, Collin M, Ricciardi-Castagnoli P, Honda K, Haniffa M & Ginhoux F.
14.Video assisted thoracic surgery (VATS) repair of subclavian artery injury following central venous catheterization: A new approach. Interactive Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery 2013 Jul;17(1):13-5. Tam J, Asmat A & Tan AK.
15.Ethical Issues in Using Bronchial Biopsies for Asthma Research. Asian Bioethics Review 2012;4(3):183-197. Teoh CM, Tam J & Tran T.
16.Integrin and GPCR Crosstalk in the Regulation of ASM Contraction Signaling in Asthma. J Allergy 2012;2012:341282. Teoh CM, Tam J & Tran T.
17.Human tissues contain CD141(hi) cross-presenting dendritic cells with functional homology to mouse CD103(+) nonlymphoid dendritic cells. Immunity 2012;37:1-14. Haniffa M, Shin A, Bigley V, McGovern N, Teo P, See P, Wasan PS, Wang XN, Malinarich F, Malleret B, Larbi A, Tan P, Zhao H, Poidinger M, Pagan S, Cookson S, Dickinson R, Dimmick I, Jarrett RF, Renia L, Tam J, Song C, Connolly J, Chan JK, Gehring A, Bertoletti A, Collin M & Ginhoux F.

Last updated on
Best viewed with Chrome 79.0, Edge 112.0, Firefox 61.0, Safari 11
National University Health System
  • National University Hospital
  • Ng Teng Fong General Hospital
  • Alexandra Hospital
  • Jurong Community Hospital
  • National University Polyclinics
  • Jurong Medical Centre
  • National University Cancer Institute, Singapore
  • National University Heart Centre, Singapore
  • National University Centre for Oral Health, Singapore
  • NUHS Diagnostics
  • NUHS Pharmacy
  • Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine
  • Faculty of Dentistry
  • Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health
Back to Top