Dr van Heerden qualified as a dentist in 1977 at the University of Pretoria. After working in London for some years, he returned to Cape Town to specialise in periodontics and oral medicine. He completed his four year specialist training in 1985 at the University of Stellenbosch and has been in private practice ever since.
He has been involved in local dental politics since 1986 and was President of the Dental Association of the Western Cape in 1996/1997 and 2005/2006. He chaired the local Dental Association Ethical Committee as well as the programme committee for many years.
Dr van Heerden was President of the Periodontal Society of the Western Cape for ten years. He has been on the National Executive Committee of the South African Society of Periodontology since 1990 and was National President in 1994-1995 as well as 2002-2003.
He is registered as a specialist Periodontist by the Health Professions Council of South Africa. He is also registered as a specialist Periodontist with the General Dental Council of the United Kingdom and the Dental Council of Namibia.
Dr van Heerden is an inaugural member of the South African Society of Implantology and co-founder of the Cape Society of Dental Implantology.
He is an international trainer in dental implantology and is involved both nationally and internationally in lecturing on periodontics and dental implantology.
He was a speaker at the World Implant Congress in Las Vegas in 2007.
He is a faculty member of the World Panel of experts for Nobel Biocare Implants (World Congress in Las Vegas). He is also on the Scientific Award Committee for the World Conference of Implantology. He is a member of the Scientific Committee for Nobel Biocare Implants.
He is the founder and convenor of the Cavendish Implant Training Centre in Claremont, Cape Town.
Dr van Heerden was the founder and managing director of Health Cred, the first patient finance system.
- In 2009 he was awarded the Meritorious Service Award by the South African Dental Association for services rendered to dentistry in South Africa.
- He was also given an award by the South African Society of Implantology for services to dental Implantology in South Africa.
- Co-Founder of the Cape Society of Dental Implantology (Western Cape)
- Convener of Western Cape Periodontal Society
- South African Dental Association (Western Cape)
- Exco Committee Member (20 years)
- South African Dental Association (National) :-
- Member of Federal Council
- Director of South African Dental Association (2010)
- Chairman of the Education Committee (2010)
- Member of the Editorial Board for the Open Journal of Implant Dentistry
- Member of the South African Academy of Aesthetic Dentistry (SAAAD)
- Member of International team of Implantology (ITI)
- Currently President of South African Association of Osseo-Integration (SAAO) (Western Cape Branch) and on the National Exco of SAAO
- – Inaugural member of the SAAO National Exco
Dr van Heerden has placed approx. 15 000 implants and has been involved in the field of implantology for the past 25 years.
His hobbies include extreme marathon running and collecting of South African Contemporary art.