Who We Are


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

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

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.  

Our President


We are pleased to welcome our new president of CHA, John Stanway. John was appointed to the role of Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at The Royal Children’s Hospital in April 2017. Prior to commencing in this role, John was the Chief Operating Officer at The Royal Children’s Hospital for more than ten years, overseeing clinical operations. From 2012, John also held the position of Deputy CEO. Before joining The Royal Children’s Hospital, John managed Monash Medical Centre, was Chief Executive of the Transport Accident Commission and held various senior management roles at General Motors Holden. John has a double major in Economics and a Graduate Diploma in Industrial Relations and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. John was also President of the Victorian Hospitals Industrial Association and Chairman for 10 years. John is currently a Board Director of The Royal Children’s Hospital Foundation, Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre Ltd, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute and Children’s Healthcare Australasia.

We would like to thank our previous CHA president, Ms Fionnagh Dougan for her past contributions to CHA. 

Mr John Stanway 
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.

Professor Les White
Children's Healthcare Australasia


Our Board of Directors


Mr John Stanway, Chief Executive Officer, The Royal Children's Hospital, VIC

Vice Presidents:

Ms Emma Maddren, General Manager, Starship Children's Hospital

Dr Annie Moulden, Medical Lead, Quality & Safety, Royal Children's Hospital, VIC

Board Members:

Prof Michael Brydon, Associate Dean, Clinical Studies, University of Notre Dame

Mr Clinton Griffiths, Nurse Unit Manager, Ballarat Health Services, VIC

Dr Carola Wittekind, Director of Paediatrics & Staff Specialist Paediatrician, Royal North Shore Hospital, Northern Sydney Local Health District, NSW

Ms Nicola Scott, Clinical Nurse Manager, Christchurch Hospital, NZ

Mr Sean Turner, Director of Pharmacy, Women's & Children's Health Network, SA

Mr Paul Craven, Executive Director, Children & Young People and Family Services, Hunter New England Local Health District, NSW

Dr Neil Archer, Clinical Director of Paediatrics, Cairns and Hinterland Hospital and Health Service, QLD

Ms Maeve Downes, Nursing Director, Lyell McEwin Hospital, SA

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 2020-2024, 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:

2019: Professor Trish Davidson

2018: Ms Christine Fan

2016: Ms Pat Marks

2014: Mr Sean Turner & Dr Rosemary Marks

2011: Dr Ralph Hanson

2010: Dr 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 6185 0325 if we can be of assistance.  

Dr Barbara Vernon, Chief Executive Officer

Gill McGaw, Business Manager

Joanna Webb, Finance Officer

Adele Kelly, Collaborative Quality Improvement Coordinator

Elijah Zhang, Benchmarking Manager

Leila Kelly, Networking Coordinator

Michelle Favier, Events Coordinator

Michael Vernon, Website Coordinator

Nathan McGaw, Member Communications Assistant

Erandi Goonetilleke, Member Communications Assistant

Kelly Eggleston, Executive Assistant

Jenny Taylor, Admin Assistant

Sean Oerlemans, Clinical Projects 

Jack Gooday, IT systems Developer


Annual Report

Our Annual Report showcases projects CHA has undergone whithin the past year and is presented each year at our AGM. Below you can find our past 5 Annual Reports.

CHA 2018/19 Annual Report

CHA 2017/18 Annual Report

CHA 2016/17 Annual Report

CHA 2015/16 Annual Report

CHA 2014/15 Annual Report