Docs sign off

Benalla Ensign - - Front Page - By Si­mon Rup­pert

Two well-re­spected and much loved doc­tors will be hang­ing up their stetho­scopes and re­tir­ing from Be­nalla’s Church St Surgery.

Dr Paul Kelly and Dr Richard de Crespigny will be leav­ing the surgery af­ter 41 and 30 years re­spec­tively.

Whilst both have big plans for re­tire­ment there’s still a good chance you might bump into them around town.

‘‘I have five grand­chil­dren to keep me busy, and we babysit them dur­ing the school hol­i­days,’’ Dr Kelly said.

‘‘We’ve got a four-wheel drive and a car­a­van so we’ll travel around Aus­tralia for a few months of the year. Maybe we’ll travel over­seas a few months a year, and I’ll be rid­ing my bike and pok­ing around Be­nalla the rest of the time.

‘‘To be hon­est I’ve been strug­gling for the last cou­ple of years to find time to come to work.’’

Dr de Crespigny won’t nec­es­sar­ily have as much free time as Dr Kelly; he plans to run the fam­ily farm full time.

‘‘I’m sad about leav­ing, but it’s good to be leav­ing a job that you’re sad to be leav­ing rather than be happy to be go­ing.

‘‘I’ve had a huge amount of joy and sat­is­fac­tion from this job but I’ve got an­other job to go to. I’ve got a farm so that will keep me busy.’’

The Church St Surgery has seen many changes in the past four decades. One that both doc­tors said has been great to see is the amount of women who now work in the in­dus­try.

‘‘In this build­ing we have nearly as many fe­male doc­tors as males. It was very much a male dom­i­nated pro­fes­sion when I started,’’ Dr Kelly said. ‘‘So I think that’s great. ‘‘And the nurses make a big dif­fer­ence they’ve be­come an in­te­gral part of our prac­tice. You couldn’t prac­tice medicine with­out nurses now.’’

Whilst Drs Kelly and de Crespigny are now mov­ing onto the next stage in their lives they are leav­ing the surgery in good hands. On top of the team of qual­i­fied doc­tors and nurses al­ready em­ployed at the surgery they have re­cently wel­comed a new in­tern, Dr Ryan Wad­dell.

‘‘I grew up in Be­nalla,’’ Dr Wad­dell said.

‘‘We moved over about 20 years ago from Nu­murkah, so most of my life we’ve been in Be­nalla. ‘‘I went away to study and now I’m back. ‘‘I’ve been work­ing at this clinic for about 12 weeks or so now and I’m find­ing the peo­ple here re­ally nice. It’s re­ally good.

‘‘I think I’m re­ally for­tu­nate to have had the ex­pe­ri­ence to work here, it’s a won­der­ful town to live and work in.

‘‘I’m very in­ter­ested in be­com­ing a GP in this area and Church St Clinic is re­ally nice, it’s an amaz­ing clinic, so maybe I’ll be sat here talk­ing to the pa­per about my re­tire­ment in 40 years.’’

Say­ing farewell: Dr Ryan Wad­dell, Dr Richard de Crespigny and Dr Paul Kelly.

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