Catherine is widely respected in Australia and overseas as a pioneer for patient and family centered care. She has practiced in the Haematology Department at Melbourne’s Royal Children’s Hospital since 1994, and during that time has contributed to the well-being of her young patients, their families and staff who work with them.
Catherine’s contribution to patient care has been far reaching. Her well recognised contribution at the Royal Children’s Hospital has achieved dramatic, measurable improvements in patient care, including greater efficiency, reduced family stress and anxiety, better pain management, increased patient safety and staff satisfaction.
In 2009 Catherine joined with other health professionals, patients and families, to create the Australian Institute for Patient and Family Centered Care. The Institute exists to improve the manner in which Australia health care services are delivered.
Inspired by the success of her initiative in using music to calm patients at the Royal Children’s Hospital, Catherine established, and became the driving force in the Hush Foundation. The Foundation has enabled the production of music for use in waiting rooms, operating theatres and treatment rooms to calm people of all ages in children’s hospitals across Australia.
Catherine’s professional contribution has been well recognised with the Award of the Royal Children’s Hospital, Chairman’s Medal in 2004, the Victorian Health Minister’s Outstanding Individual Achievement Award in 2006, and the National Award for Clinical Excellence and Patient Safety, Australian Council of Healthcare Standards, 2007.
Catherine was awarded a Churchill Fellowship to the USA to further her global understanding of patient care, in 2010, was listed in the Victorian Honour Roll of Women, in 2013 and received the Art Music Award, Australian Performing Arts Association (APRA), in 2014. Catherine was made Member of the Order of Australia (AM), for significant service to medicine, particularly to improved patient and family care and community healthcare standards, and to the arts.
Catherine’s major contribution recognised by this Award, above and beyond her professional work as a Physician, exemplifies the Rotary ideal of service above self. She joins a distinguished body of individuals who have been previous recipients of this award.