The AFMW Inaugural awards have been received!

It gave me great pleasure to deliver the inaugural AFMW awards to the recipients Dr Karen Price, Dr Kathleen Hayes and Dr Marissa Daniels.

The photos below show Dr Karen Price President, myself, Dr Kathleen Hayes and to our right. Dr Marissa Daniels received her award by post in Queensland.

The Australian Federation of Medical Women President’s Award for Excellent Service to Health 2021, was given to Dr Karen Price President, Royal Australian College of General Practitioners, for her excellent contribution to the health of Australia, leadership and advocacy for general practitioners.

The Australian Federation of Medical Women President’s Honours was given to one of our elders, Dr Kathleen Hayes in recognition of her excellent contribution to the community and profession.

The Australian Federation of Medical Women President’s Young AFMW Award was given to Dr Marissa Daniels, in recognition of her excellent contribution to individual states, AFMW and MWIA.

About the award recipients

Dr Price and Dr Hayes receiving their AFMW awards

Dr Karen Price (l), Dr Magdalena Simonis (c) and Dr Kathleen Hayes (r)

Dr Price

Dr Price is a dedicated GP of 30 years who has dedicated her life to general practice and has advocated for the health of the public by drawing attention to the importance of GPs as gatekeepers to the health system. Dr Price has worked tirelessly to help Government appreciate the need to engage GPs closely during the COVID-19 pandemic as patients trust their GPs more than any other health professional. During this period, Dr Price has also tried to ensure that general practitioners receive mental health support, the PPE, and COVID-19 updates. All of which are essential and equally important to maintaining the health of the nation during difficult times. We all know that the battle against COVID-19 is by no means over and we wish Dr Price every strength during then next year as we enter yet another one of its phases. This award is in appreciation of Dr Price’s outstanding leadership and support of the health of the Nation, during one of the most trying times in Australia’s history.

Dr Hayes

Dr Hayes was joined Victorian Medical Women’s Society (VMWS) in 1959 and was the recipient of the the VMWS Constance Stone Oration in 2012. At this event, Dr Hayes presented a synapsis of her most important work on Cytomegalovirus, nicknamed the ‘Cinderella to Rubella’, which has added to our understanding of congenital diseases and importantly deafness, due to CMV infection in pregnancy. Dr Haye’s contribution to elucidation of the complex nature of (human) cytomegalovirus (CMV), especially the epidemiology, diagnosis and interpretation of laboratory results related to maternal and foetal infection, have informed obstetric practice internationally. It gave me great pleasure to honour Dr Hayes at the Annual meeting of AFMW and to bring attention to the important work that she has contributed to over so many years.

The Australian Federation of Medical Women President’s Young AFMW Award was given to Dr Marissa DanielsDr Daniels

Dr Marissa Daniels is a trainee in paediatric intensive care medicine based in Queensland. She grew up on a farm in Central Qld, and completed schooling in rural and regional Qld before moving to Melbourne to attend medical school at the University of Melbourne which is when I first met her around the VMWS committee meeting tables. Marissa spent her clinical and junior doctor years at St Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne. After a period of time, her interest moved towards a focus on the origins of disease, which took Marissa back to Brisbane to do 3 years basic science research in human cancer genomics after which, she started Paediatric Intensive Care training and has been working in intensive care, anaesthetics, emergency medicine and general paediatrics since that time. Since Marissa joined VMWS more than 10 years ago, and has stayed involved in all facets of our medical women’s societies taking on roles as VMWS social secretary 2009-10, webmaster 2013-15, treasurer 2011-16 to begin with. From 2014-2020, Marissa was AFMW treasurer, became our assistant webmaster 2012-14 then co-webmaster 2020 and has been the young AFMW representative from 2013-16. Marissa joined the QMWS as a committee member 2016 and I appointed her to onto the AFMW Executive as executive officer of AFMW 2021, at the start of my presidency. Marissa maintains all the other roles within the organisations and from 2020 was appointed MWIA joint webmaster 2020. In my introduction of Marissa at our AGM, I commented that “every organisation needs someone like Marissa”. It’s a pleasure watching a member of yAFMW grow and take on the various roles and responsibilities with kindness and a willingness to support others.


Magdalena Simonis
President AFMW


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