From the President

20 January 2020

Welcome to 2020. Along with all of you, I have watched in horror the devastating impact the bushfires around Australia have had on local communities. Many people have lost their homes and precious possessions. Some have lost their lives. The College extends our sympathy to all affected.

There are ways we can help and I would urge all members to support victims and fire services as much as they can. You can also read some of the messages of support the College has received from members.

The College has also issued a warning about prolonged exposure to bushfire smoke and poor air quality, encouraging pregnant women to heed advice from authorities, take precautions, limit outdoor activities and try to spend more time indoors.

We also realise our role as an advocate for the health and wellbeing of women and girls, in Australia, New Zealand, the Pacific and globally. That’s why in November last year we called on governments to urgently address the causes and impacts of climate change.

A packed agenda

For the College, 2020 will be another busy year. From addressing gender equity and diversity, tackling workforce issues and reviewing the training curriculum, through to our work with Indigenous and Māori communities, and global health advocacy, the RANZCOG Board cannot wait to pursue the outcomes that will benefit you and your workplaces. And we welcome our two new Directors to the Board – Ms Julie Hamblin and Dr Judith Gardiner.

Get along to events

One of the privileges of being President is meeting new and old faces at the many RANZCOG events held throughout the year. In April I am traveling to the Top End, along with the rest of the Board, to attend the Regional Fellows Scientific Meeting.  Regional and rural health and supporting our members in these areas by advocating to governments the important role Fellows and Diplomates have in providing the quality healthcare for women, is one of the Board’s top priorities, so I am looking forward to this event. There is a chance to meet the Board and ask us questions. I will also use the time to meet with the NT Government and rural health authorities.

Check out the program and book your place via the event website.

We want to hear from you

As you have probably noticed, we have given our newsletter a makeover, and doesn’t it look fantastic! Not only will it be delivered to your inboxes, filled with the news and information you need to know, every week, it also has a new name: Connect. This name has been partly inspired by the consistent feedback from members and trainees around Australia and New Zealand. That is, we are family. And like all families, RANZCOG members, trainees and staff share a special connection.

No matter who you are and where you are, let’s make sure we are connecting with one another with respect, kindness and compassion, be it in the workplace, at social functions, or through College activities. I urge you to participate. Your opinion matters, so…Connect with the College. There are many ways to get involved. I look forward to connecting with you in 2020 and, if you ever want to chat, get in touch through [email protected] 

Best wishes,




Dr Pieter Mourik (AM)

Being recognised in the Australia Day honours was a highlight for this rural medicine advocate.



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