Sydney Orthopaedic Spinal Surgeon Adjunct Professor Charles New has spent a considerable part of his medical career serving his country as a surgeon in the Royal Australian Army Medical Corps. He represents those doctors who are willing to step aside from their private practice, put on a service uniform and head to some of the world’s biggest trouble spots to perform front-line surgery, often putting themselves in personal danger, in regions such as Rwanda, Banda Aceh and East Timor.
Recently, as a result of his outstanding service, Charles was promoted to the rank of Major General of the Australian Army and Surgeon General of the ADF Reserve. During the medical indemnity crisis, Dr New was able to obtain Federal Government consent for the Medical Indemnity Rescue Package to be based on a ‘claims incurred’ model, which allowed for the broadest possible level of protection for doctors and patients relying on medical indemnity cover.

Dr New’s experience in leadership, training and strategy are highly valued by all who have known and worked with him. His contribution to the cause of independent medicine includes leadership roles as NSW Chairman of the Australian Society of Orthopaedic Surgeons (ASOS) and Federal Treasurer of the Australian Orthopaedic Association (AOA). At the same time, Charles has maintained an extraordinary professional commitment to the health and wellbeing of Australian Defence Force veterans and serving men and women, including the active recruitment of many of his medical colleagues into the Royal Australian Army Medical Corps.

Along the way, he has found time to run a private Orthopaedic practice and serve as a VMO at Nepean Hospital, as well as undertaking a teaching role at Sydney University. We recognise Dr Charles New’s outstanding contribution to independent medicine with the presentation of a Bruce Shepherd Medal.