AM for children’s advocate

TWO weeks after we reported on the success of members of the community in the Australia Day honours, it seems we have even more reason to celebrate. At the time, we claimed that 16 of the 683 honorees were Jewish, but it has now come to our attention that there were actually 17 Jews who received awards. Step forward Perth doctor Associate Professor Peter Winterton (pictured) who said this week he was elated at news he had been recognised as a Member of the Order of Australia (AM), in the annual honours list.

Winterton, who is medical director of Perth’s Princess Margaret Hospital, has devoted years of his life to enhancing the protection of children and was a member of the Ministerial Advisory Council on Child Protection from 1999 to 2008.

His many medical roles have also included the presidency and life membership of the Australian Society for the History of Medicine, a medical senior member of WA’s State Administrative Tribunal, a member on the WA Faculty Board of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners, an examiner at the college, and an adjunct clinical associate professor of the University of Western Australia. The WA doctor said: “It was gratifying that years of effort in the area of child protection had received some recognition.”

Asked what he considered to be the highlight of his work in this field, Winterton told The AJN it was the establishment of a therapy service at the Children’s Hospital in Perth for children who had been abused, a service which he described as “a once-in-a-generation opportunity”.

As a medical historian, he said a landmark of his work had been his involvement in the Australian & New Zealand Society for the History of Medicine and being its president at the time it began publishing its journal, Health And History.

Winterton is active in the Perth Jewish community, with his work for the WA division of Australian Friends of the Hebrew University, which he said “provides a very good secular focus for the Jewish community”. Winterton’s honour means that 2.48 per cent of honour recipients this year were Jewish, rather than 2.35 per cent as previously reported.

PETER KOHN

Perth doctor Associate Professor Peter Winterton