Hamilton D’Arcy Sutherland


Emeritus Cardiothoracic Surgeon, Royal Adelaide Hospital


Dr Sutherland was born in Adelaide (1913), educated at St Peter’s College (1923-31) and at the University of Adelaide. He was Resident Medical Officer, (Royal) Adelaide Hospital (1938). He travelled to England, achieved his primary fellowship and obtained additional surgical experience (1939); returning to Australia he was appointed Surgical Registrar, Royal Adelaide Hospital (1940). He served in the Royal Australian Navy (1941-45) reaching the rank of Surgeon Lieutenant Commander RANVR and classified as a surgical specialist. Following postgraduate study in the Navy he proceeded MS(Adelaide) (1944), and after the war, FRACS (1945) and FRCS(Eng) (1947). He had been Assistant Superintendent (Surgical), Royal Adelaide Hospital (1946) and was awarded a Nuffield Dominion Travelling Fellowship which enabled him to train as a thoracic surgeon at Harefield Hospital, England (1947-48).

On returning to Australia (1949) he was appointed Thoracic Surgeon, South Australian Tuberculosis Service, the Repatriation Department, the Adelaide Children’s Hospital and Royal Adelaide Hospital which appointments he held until 1977 when he was appointed Director, Cardiac Surgery Unit at the Melbourne Children’s Hospital (1977-80).

He was elected to Council (1967-79), appointed Censor in Chief, Court of Examiners (1974) and elected President, Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (1978-79). After holding a number of lectureships and honorary professorships in Europe and the United States of America, he returned to Adelaide (1981) and was appointed Director, Institute of Medical and Veterinary Science (1982-84) and Administrator Outpatient Services, Flinders Medical Centre (1984-88).

During his professional career he presented numerous papers, addresses, reports and other publications and served on many State, National and International Committees.

Dr Sutherland was appointed Honorary Fellow, The American College of Surgeons (1979) and a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (1980), both in recognition of his contribution to surgery.

He maintained a busy, active life in retirement centred around a vineyard on his property in the Adelaide Hills and later his residence in Beaumont, South Australia. Hamilton D’Arcy Sutherland died in 2008, aged 94.

Foundation Day Address – 1980- The True Glory

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