2021 Victorian Rural Health Award Winners

2021 Victorian Rural Health Award Winners

Outstanding contribution by a rural GP

Dr Peter “Justin” Madden

Otway Medical Clinic


Recently retired from General Practice, Dr Madden is recognised for his contribution to the Colac community over nearly four decades.

Dr Madden has been a credentialed VMO at the Colac Hospital for 38 years and for the last 25 years he has also devoted his skills to Aged Care Medicine providing weekly on-site clinics to the residents at Mercy Place Aged Care. He also supervised and taught countless Medical Students and GP Registrars.

Despite retiring from the Otway Medical Clinic in February, he continues to train and teach the clinic’s registrars.

Outstanding Contribution by a Rural Generalist

Dr Elizabeth Garoni

Mt Beauty Medical Centre and The Gardens Albury


Dr Garoni has been working in the Mount Beauty community for more than 20 years. She provides the community with comprehensive general practice and emergency care including x-ray services, fracture management, obstetrics and palliative care and is a credentialled Visiting Medical Officer at Alpine Health.

Dr Garoni is an active member of the local community, especially the CFA, local equestrian clubs and the Mount Beauty Primary School.

Outstanding Contribution by a Nurse/Midwife

Louise Holland

Bendigo Community Health Services


Louise Holland is Nurse Practitioner at Bendigo Community Health Services, and has been at the forefront of sexual and reproductive health and women’s health in rural and regional areas for over 25 years.

She plays a vital role in responding to the health care needs of the community including young people, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, gay men, and those from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

Outstanding Contribution by a Rural Allied Health Professional

Dr Naomi Malone

A Life Simply Lived Psychology, Boort


Dr Malone has worked in rural practice for almost two decades and since establishing her practice in Boort, Dr Malone has worked hard to provide outreach services in neighbouring communities Swan Hill, Kerang, and Cohuna.

Dr Malone’s reputation for providing quality clinical supervision has also led to her being a highly sought-after clinical supervisor for experienced psychologists Australia wide.

Outstanding Contribution by a Rural Practice Manager

Miffanwy Shelton

Corangamite Clinic Colac


Miffy Shelton runs a busy rural general practice clinic that provides medical services (on-call supervisors, obstetricians and anaesthetists) to Colac Area Health.

Miffy is recognised for her untiring devotion to guiding the clinic through the Covid pandemic from arranging adaptations to practice to facilitate working from home for at risk GPs, telemedicine from the clinic, time out for all staff to avoid burnout during trying times through to organizing Covid immunisation clinics.

Outstanding Contribution by a Rural Outreach Provider

Dr Andrew Horwood


Dr Horwood has been undertaking outreach visits to the Wimmera region one week a month for the last two and a half years.

Dr Horwood works closely with both public and private multi-disciplinary teams, in particular the Persistent Pain Program at Wimmera Health Care Group to improve patient education and help people reduce their previous reliance on opiate medication.

Rising Star Award

Muhammad Yousuf

HeadtoHelp Wellington (Sale)


Muhammad joined the team at HeadtoHelp Wellington as a provisional psychologist after recognising the increasing demand in Gippsland following drought, bushfires and more recently COVID-19.

To meet the demands and needs of his clients, Muhammad has undertaken further studies and is currently completing a Diploma of Clinical Hypnotherapy.

Closing the gap award

Dr Karoline Gunn

Gunditjmara Aboriginal Cooperative, Warrnambool


Dr Karoline Gunn has been working at Gunditjmara health clinic since October 2018.

Dr Gunn is involved with the Clontarf Foundation, performing health checks for young Aboriginal boys, undertaking women’s health screening days including cervical screening, breast screening and bowel screening, alongside regular health checks specifically for Aboriginal people.

Length of Service award Recipients

  • Dr Bruce Johnston – Inglis Medical Centre, Sale
  • Dr Geoffrey Campbell – Bunyip Medical Clinic
  • Dr Grant Chapman – Drysdale Village Medical Centre
  • Dr Kristina Tavcar – Shepperton Lister House Medical Centre
  • Dr Nola Maxfield – Wonthaggi Medical Group
  • Dr Paul O'Dwyer - Shepperton Lister House Medical Centre
  • Dr Phillip Hall – Warrnambool Medical Clinic
  • Dr Steven Bismire – Ovens Medical Group Wangaratta
  • Dr Bernard Moore – Yarrawonga Medical Clinic