Citation for the Award of Doctor of Medical Science (Honoris Causa)
Dr Joanna Flynn has made an exceptional contribution to the development of the pivotal discipline of general practice as a distinct professional specialty. She graduated equal second, and with prizes in surgery and gynaecology, in the University of Melbourne’s MBBS class of 1975 after which she continued training in general practice and public health.
With experience in North Queensland, Tasmania and rural Victoria, for the past 20 years, she has worked in a West Brunswick practice, where she is a partner. In parallel, she was State Director of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) Training Program in Victoria, for the ten years until 1998.
Dr Flynn was President of the Medical Practitioners Board of Victoria from 2000 to 2008 having been first appointed to the Board in 1989, President of the Australian Medical Council from 2003 to 2008 and a member of the Board of the Postgraduate Medical Council of Victoria for eight years, and chair in 2007.
She also chaired the Australian Medical Council working party that developed the seminal ‘Good Medical Practice: A Code of Conduct for Doctors in Australia’in preparation for the introduction of national medical registration.
In June 2009, Joanna Flynn was appointed Chair of the Board of Eastern Health, one of Melbourne’s largest metropolitan health services, and in August 2009, was appointed the Inaugural Chair of the Medical Board of Australia.
She has served as a member of significant accreditation committees and advisory boards and has been a representative of the Australian Medical Council on the Expert Group on Legislation, Australian Health Ministers Advisory Committee, the Commonwealth Medical Training Review Panel and the Australian Medical Workforce Advisory Committee.
Joanna Flynn’s lucid, strongly written and informative editorials and communiqués have been integral in the dissemination of the framework of a new era in the regulation of health professions in Australia. The Australian National Registration and Accreditation Scheme which regulates health practitioners and students, is developing with Joanna Flynn as a key leader to be responsive, adaptive, open, outward facing and engaged with the professions and community. Throughout the development and implementation of this scheme Dr Flynn has been a respected source of advice and guidance.
A Membership of the Order of Australia was awarded to Joanna Flynn in 2011 for her service to medical administration and to the community, particularly in the areas of practice standards, regulation and professional education and as a general practitioner. Her tireless industry for high standards in medical practice and medical regulation throughout Australia brings credit to this University and the Melbourne Medical School.