Who We Are

Our President

Welcome to the web home for Children's Healthcare Australasia!

It is an honour to serve as the President of CHA, an organisation with an extraordinary record of advocacy, action and commitment to children, young people and their families. A healthy society needs healthy children.

CHA is a multidisciplinary community of organizations and individuals committed to enhancing healthcare outcomes for children, young people and their families. The CHA team, our members, your colleagues, the parents and families of sick children,  all work together to improve our healthcare systems. 

As President I benefit from your individual perspectives, your rich diversity of experience and wealth of knowledge. As an organisation we welcome ideas, contributions and perspectives that mean we can improve our knowledge, understand our differences and work and learn together.  The health of children and young people matters; your membership counts, and as the President I am excited to lead this team.







Professor Trish Davidson
Children's Healthcare Australasia


Our Patron

In 2014 Professor Les White was unanimously appointed as the inaugural Patron of CHA. Professor White, a former CHA President and CHA medallist, has a strong grounding in children's healthcare, with a reputation for distinguished contributions in the field. Les was appointed as the inaugural New South Wales Chief Paediatrician in September 2010. 

He was Executive Director of Sydney Children's Hospital (1995–2010), President of Children’s Healthcare Australasia (1999-2004), Convenor of the Greater Eastern and Southern NSW Child Health Network (2001– 2010) and the John Beveridge Professor of Paediatrics (2005-2010). In 2007 Les received an Order of Australia award for service to medicine in the field of paediatrics, to medical administration, and to the community through a range of organisations.

Les was also the Chair of the CHA Children’s Rights Charter Expert Reference Group that led the development of the Charter of the Rights of Children & Young People in Healthcare Services in Australia & New Zealand.  We are delighted that Les has accepted CHA’s invitation to become our Patron, and look forward to working with him in that capacity over the next few years.


Our Board of Directors


Vice President

Prof Patricia Davidson

Executive Director

Children, Young People & Families Services,

Hunter New England Local Health District, NSW

Currently Vacant

Board Members


Prof Michael Brydon

Chief Executive Officer

Sydney Children's Hospital Network,

New South Wales, Australia



Ms Fionnagh Dougan

Chief Executive Officer

Children's Health Queensland Hospital and Health Service

Queensland, Australia


Mr Clinton Griffiths

Nurse Unit Manager

Ballarat Health Services,

Victoria, Australia


Dr Keith Howard

Medical Lead,

Children's Health Network, Northern, 

New South Wales, Australia



Ms Emma Maddren

General Manager

Starship Children's Hospital,

Auckland, New Zealand


Dr Annie Moulden

Community Paediatrician

Victoria, Australia



Dr Melissa Naidoo

Deputy Executive Director Clinical Governance

Gold Coast University Hospital and Health Service
Queensland, Australia


Dr Dimitria Simatos

Director of Paediatrics

Eastern Health, Victoria, Australia

Mr John Stanway

Chief Executive

Royal Children's Hospital

Victoria, Australia


Dr Carola Wittekind

Staff Specialist Paediatrician

Royal North Shore Hospital,

Northern Sydney Local Health District,

New South Wales, Australia



Our Governance

CHA is a not for profit Company Limited by Guarantee.  CHA is committed to meeting the highest standards of governance and accountability to its members.  To find out about how CHA operates, please see our Constitution and our Governance Charter.

CHA's vision & strategic priorities are outlined in our Strategic Plan 2016-2020, developed in consultation with members.

Children’s Healthcare Australasia holds its Annual General meeting in October each year.  For an overview of CHA's activities and our audited financial reports, see our annual report for that meeting and all previous years can be found here.

Honoured Medallists 

Each year, CHA is proud to present our Medal of Distinction. This Medal was established in 2004 to honour individuals who make an outstanding contribution to improving children’s health through service provision, leadership, or advocacy.

CHA Medal Recipients:

2016: Ms Pat Marks

2014: Mr Sean Turner & Dr Rosemary Marks

2011: Doctor Ralph Hanson

2010: Doctor Antonio Penna

2009: Associate Professor Kingsley Coulthard

2008: Professor Graham Vimpani AM

2007: Professor Frank Oberklaid OAM

2005: Professor Les White AO

2004: Ms Anne Cahill


Our Team

CHA is proud to have a dedicated and enthusiastic team of staff working in our Canberra office, which we share with our partner organisation, Women's Healthcare Australasia.  Please don't hesitate to contact our friendly staff on 02 6175 1900 if we can be of assistance.  

Dr Barbara Vernon, Chief Executive Officer

Julie Hale, Deputy Chief Executive Officer

Gill McGaw, Business Manager

Joanna Webb, Finance Officer

Adele Kelly, Collaborative Quality Improvement Coordinator

Deborah Browne, Collaborative Director

Elijah Zhang, Benchmarking Manager

Heather Artuso, Maternity Benchmarking Coordinator

Leila Kelly, Networking Coordinator

Michelle Favier, Events Coordinator

Michael Vernon, Website Coordinator

Jez Baron, Communications Officer

Kelly Eggleston, Executive Assistant