The Australian Hand Surgery Society promotes the pursuit of excellence in hand surgery by, conducting scientific meetings, promoting fellowship, liasing with national and international surgical bodies and undertaking hand surgery teaching.

Hand Surgery as a specialty was slow to evolve in Australia, hand problems being dealt with by plastic, orthopaedic or general surgeons. In the 1950’s hand surgery started to gain recognition, particularly with the work of the plastic surgeons in Melbourne, evidenced by Rank and Wakefield’s publication of “Surgery of Repair As Applied to Hand Injuries” in 1953. In other cities such as Brisbane, hand surgery was mostly done by orthopaedic surgeons with a special interest in the field, and elsewhere it was divided between the different specialties.

In Sydney interested surgeons had formed an association to discuss hand surgery clinical cases and this group had started regular meetings in 1961. Crawford McKellar was an enthusiastic and active person whose endeavours led to the formation of the New South Wales Hand Surgery Association in 1963. This group held regular meetings, and had some interstate members, including John Hueston of Melbourne, and Peter Millroy from Brisbane.

This New South Wales Hand Surgery Association has continued to prosper, and holds four or five clinical meetings a year, sometimes with an overseas guest professor.

In 1970, and again in 1971, John Hueston invited members of the NSW Hand Surgery Association to Melbourne, for informal discussion of hand surgery cases, and demonstrations of his surgical expertise. At this time the concept of a nationwide hand surgery society was discussed, and amongst the members of the NSW Hand Surgery Association a draft constitution was prepared and a mechanism for setting up an inaugural meeting considered.

In March 1972 Sir Benjamin Rank came to Sydney and was met by the office bearers of the NSW Hand Surgery Association, Alan McJannet, Frank Harvey, Richard Honner and John Allman. After discussion of the objects of the group he agreed to support the concept of a National Hand Surgery Society, and to chair the meeting required for its formation.

The foundation meeting was held on 1 July 1972 in the hall of the British Medical Association building in Macquarie Street, Sydney, with 47 surgeons from around the country in attendance. Read More...


Society Executives

President Dr David Stabler
Secretary Mr Jeffery Ecker
Treasurer Dr Anthony Beard
Ex-officio President Mr Randall Sach
President-Elect Mr Anthony Berger
Newsletter Editor Dr Michael Hayes
Archivist Dr Michael Hayes
  Dr Gregory Bain
  Dr Stephen Tham
  Dr Ian Edmunds


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SESA 2014

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