Vale Associate Professor Christine Tippett AM

07 March 2021

Tributes are continuing to flow following the death of Associate Professor Christine Tippett AM.

Chris, who was the first female president of RANZCOG, died last week, triggering an outpouring of emotion from colleagues across women’s health and medicine more broadly, and the general public.

RANZCOG President Dr Vijay Roach said: “Chris was a respected leader and trailblazer in O&G. RANZCOG sends our love and deepest sympathy to her family.

“Chris, you will always remain in RANZCOG’s heart. We are grateful for your contribution to our College and women’s health in Australia & New Zealand, and internationally.”

Close friend and colleague Dr John Regan, a RANZCOG Board Director, said: “Chris’s contribution to the care of women in this country and internationally cannot be overstated. I had the personal privilege to work with her for over 20 years and learnt so much from her, as did so many of my colleagues. Farewell Chris, your leadership, wisdom and clinical expertise will be missed by all.”

A significant contribution

Chris was recognised for her outstanding contribution to medicine, especially in Victoria.

Former Health Minister Jill Hennessy said: “Vale Christine Tippett AM. A clinician, world leader in obstetrics, gynaecology and women’s reproductive rights. Better healthcare for babies and women, and law reform wouldn’t have happened without her. She was wonderful.”

In 2008, Chris led the expert panel on Victoria’s abortion law reform debate. Chris was unwavering in her counsel which sought to ensure women in Australia retained their ability to have a choice, and for doctors to be able to provide women with access to an abortion without fear of retribution.

Read more about Chris’s contribution to medicine in Victoria.

Internationally recognised

In 2018, Chris was elected to the position of FIGO's Honorary Treasurer. In an interview with FIGO, Chris said she considered herself fortunate to have had a “wonderful and rewarding career” as a clinician “who has also had the opportunity to be involved in supporting and promoting women’s health”. “One of the greatest joys has been caring for women with serious medical conditions, who having benefited from the extraordinary advances in medicine have been able to have successful pregnancies,” she said.

Read FIGO’s tribute to Chris.

Read her Q&A with FIGO here.

A true leader

In an interview with O&G Magazine in 2019, Chris said the greatest influence on her life had been her mother. “She was an amazing lady and an outstanding role model for me. I would describe her as an early feminist and a woman who strongly believed that women could and should be able to do whatever they wanted,” she said.

Choosing to specialise in O&G, Chris said she made the right decision. “I loved both medicine and surgery and it seemed liked the perfect combination of both. It was a fortunate choice as I cannot think of any other specialty that I would have preferred.”



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