Car­ing doc­tor hon­oured

Waipa Post - - News -

Dr Mary Bal­lan­tyne, from Te Awa­mutu Med­i­cal Cen­tre, has been awarded a Queen’s Ser­vice Medal for ser­vices to women's and chil­dren's health.

Mary, and her hus­band Richard, worked at Waikato Hospi­tal in the late 1970s. Richard be­came a part­ner of Te Awa­mutu Med­i­cal Cen­tre in 1979, fol­lowed by Mary in 1981.

She es­tab­lished a busy gen­eral prac­tice, pre­dom­i­nantly car­ing for women and chil­dren.

Mary says at that time it was ac­cepted pro­fes­sional prac­tice for doc­tors to do what they could for their com­mu­ni­ties.

“The pro­fes­sion was pre­dom­i­nantly male, so work­ing with women and chil­dren was a nat­u­ral area where I felt I could make a dif­fer­ence,” she says.

Mary is a mem­ber of the Aus­tralasian Menopause So­ci­ety and es­tab­lished the Women’s Health and Menopause Clinic, with af­ter­hours ap­point­ments to im­prove ac­cess for work­ing women and mums.

She says at the time there had been the scare over the use of Hor­mone Re­place­ment Ther­apy and women needed help to deal with menopause.

In 2010 she was ap­pointed to corun a Gen­eral Prac­ti­tioner Gy­nae­co­log­i­cal Clinic to ad­dress a back­log of clients wait­ing on rou­tine, mi­nor pro­ce­dures.

She was a driv­ing force be­hind the es­tab­lish­ment of the Ki­hik­ihi Health Hub, which pro­vides a free GP ser­vice for the school, and new ini­tia­tives such as di­etary and den­tal ad­vice.

Mary has been an ac­tive mem­ber of Doc­tors for Sex­ual

Abuse Care, as a Po­lice Sur­geon cov­ered foren­sic ex­am­i­na­tions in Te Awa­mutu for women sub­jected to do­mes­tic and sex­ual abuse and was a mem­ber of the Child Pro­tec­tion Team for Child Youth and Fam­ily, re­view­ing place­ments of chil­dren up­lifted from their fam­i­lies.

She says her col­leagues and Te Awa­mutu Med­i­cal Cen­tre has al­ways been, and con­tin­ues to be, sup­port­ive of her ini­tia­tives.

Out­side her pro­fes­sion, Mary was a rep­re­sen­ta­tive in the Angli­can Synod for the Waikato Dioce­san, helped with the Angli­can Youth Group and es­tab­lished a Ladies Fel­low­ship meet­ing group.


TE AWA­MUTU doc­tor Mary Bal­lan­tyne — a QSM for ser­vices to women's and chil­dren's health.

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