Dr Rosalie Jean Shaw

Dr Shaw received the Medal of the Order of Australia on 26 January 2011

In 1971 after resitting university entrance examinations in science and mathematics she entered Monash University Medical Faculty.  She graduated in 1976 in third place with a First Class Honours degree.

At the time of graduation she was already committed to a career as a palliative care physician.  But at that time there were no palliative care services in Australia.  After a period of surgical training, she persuaded the Medical Superintendent of the Hollywood Repatriation General Hospital in Perth to start a palliative care service.  He agreed to this if she would also undertake post-graduate training in Medical Administration.  She completed a Fellowship in Medical Administration in 1985.

Therefore, in 1981, while occupying the position of Assistant Medical Superintendent, Dr Shaw established the Palliative Care Unit at the Hollywood Repatriation General Hospital, Perth, and its Director until 1992.  From 1980 until 1992 Dr Shaw was closely involved with planning and development of hospice and palliative care programmes in Perth.  During this time, she was also involved in a wide range of teaching activities and was invited to speak in many states in Australia and overseas.  In 1986 she was appointed as the Senior Lecturer in Palliative Care in the Department of Community Practice, Faculty of Medicine at the University of Western Australia.  This was the first academic appointment in palliative care in Australia.  From 1983 Community Practice trainees were rotated for six months through the Palliative Care Unit at Hollywood Hospital as part of their supervised training.

During this appointment Dr Shaw continued to be Director, Palliative Care Unit, Hollywood Repatriation General Hospital, as well as having clinical responsibilities at the Cottage Hospice, Perth.  In January 1991 she was awarded the Public Service Medal, Australia Day Honours List, for her contribution to hospice and palliative care services in Australia.

In 1992 Dr Shaw was invited to come to Singapore to further the professional development of the Hospice Care Association, a hospice home care programme, and from that time was involved in the development of palliative care in Singapore and in the region, firstly as Medical Director of Hospice Care Association, and from 1995 as Medical Director of Dover Park Hospice.

In May 1999 Dr Shaw joined the Department of Palliative Medicine at the newly formed National Cancer Centre Singapore and simultaneously was appointed as the Executive Director of the Asia Pacific Hospice Palliative Care Network.  In this role she has travelled to 21 countries giving lectures and bedside teaching and as a management consultant to hospice and palliative care programmes.

Dr Shaw retired from the position as Executive Director of APHN on 1 January 2009 and returned to Australia to continue her practice in Palliative Medicine.  Dr Shaw remains as an active member with APHN and continues to travel around the region giving talks and lectures.

On 26 January 2011, Dr Shaw was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for her contribution to medicine, particularly through the APHN.

On the National Day of Singapore, 9 August 2011, Dr Shaw was awarded the Public Service Medal in recognition for her contribution as the Medical Director for Hospice Care Association (now known as the HCA Hospice Care) from 1992 to 1998; Medical Director for Dover Park Hospice from 1996 to 1998; Consultant with the Department of Palliative Medicine, National Cancer Centre Singapore from 1999 to January 2010.

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