Endocrinologists and diabetes specialists have been recognised in the Australia Day Honours List
Professor Bruce Robinson, an endocrinologist at the Royal North Shore Hospital, Sydney is recognised with Australia’s highest honour – Companion of the Order of Australia (AC) for eminent service to medical research, and to national healthcare, through policy development and reform, and to tertiary education.
Professor Robinson has also been Chair, National Health and Medical Research Council, and Chair, Medicare Benefits Schedule Review Taskforce, since 2015, Dean, Sydney Medical School, University of Sydney, 2007-2016. And is Co-Head, Cancer Genetics Group, Kolling Institute for Medical Research, ongoing. He is also a member of the Editorial Board, ‘Nature, Clinical Practice, Endocrinology’, and ‘Thyroid’ journals.
Professor Jeffrey Zajac, of Victoria is appointed Officer (AO) in the General Division of the Order of Australia for distinguished service to medical research and education, particularly in the field of endocrinology, and to professional societies. Professor Zajac is the Head of Austin Health’s Division of Medical Services and the University of Melbourne’s Department of Medicine, as well as Director, Department of Endocrinology. He is a life member of the Endocrine Society of Australia.
Professor Zajac said he was honoured to receive the award and currently studying the way testosterone works, especially its impact on bone, muscle and other tissues.
“Endocrinology is the most logical specialty in medicine, the way hormones are regulated is becoming better understood, as well as the way hormones interact with each other.”
Dr Sanghamitra Guha, Director of Diabetes Services at Royal Adelaide Hospital, is appointed Member (AM) of the Order of Australia, for significant service to medicine, and to medical education.
Also recognised as Australian of the Year is South Australian ophthalmologist Dr James Muecke who is hailed for his work in diabetes-related blindness. Dr Muecke said he wanted to use the publicity from his award to campaign for regular eye checks for people with type 2 diabetes and for a sugar tax.
“Diabetes is now the leading cause of blindness among working age adults in this country, and yet less than half of 1.5 million people who have diabetes are having their eyes checked regularly, often with devastating vision loss or even blindness. It is also a major problem for Aboriginal Australians, in whom diabetes has increased 80 times over the past 40 years due to exposure to high-sugar food and drinks that they are not genetically adapted to handle,” he said.