Dr Barry Catchlove was just 16 years old when he began his studies with the University of Sydney School of Medicine. It was the beginning of an illustrious career and a lifelong relationship with the University.
Today, Dr Catchlove received an Honorary Doctor of Medicine and Health in recognition of his outstanding contribution as a medical professional and administrator, as well as to the University.
After graduating from Sydney Medical School in 1966, he pursued a career in medicine, healthcare management and education. Early in his career, he worked in executive positions at Royal North Shore Hospital, then as CEO of the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne. At the Royal Children’s Hospital, he implemented changes targeting the health of adolescents, community paediatrics and was instrumental in restoring the hospital’s reputation as one of the top paediatric institutions in the world.
After more than a decade working in the public health sector, he was appointed Managing Director of Health Care of Australia, leading the company’s growth across Australia and South East Asia to become the nation’s largest high-technology private hospital pathology and radiology operator.
He combined his medical and administrative expertise to create a new form of partnership that saw the private management of public hospitals and the development of co-located private hospitals associated with major teaching institutions. He also served as President of the Australian Hospitals Association and Chair of the Australian Council of Healthcare Standards.
As an advisor to the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, Dr Catchlove was responsible for a number of initiatives that improved the health of people around the world and supported Australia’s foreign relations efforts.
In 2016, in recognition of his significant service to medical administration, international business co-operation and education, he was named a Member of the Order of Australia.
He is also a dedicated supporter of the University, generously devoting his time as a volunteer with the Medical Alumni Association and the Alumni Council. He has focused on reconnecting alumni through events and reunions to build a sense of community.
For the last 20 years, Dr Catchlove has been a valued ambassador for the University as President of the Medical Graduates Association, through his involvement with the Sydney University Medical Foundation and as President of the University’s Alumni Council. He also played a major role as the local representative of the Sydney University Graduates of North America Association.
In 2008, his contributions to the University were recognised when he was made an Honorary Fellow of the University. He served for six years as a Fellow of Senate, chaired the Safety and Risk Management Committee and, as Pro-Chancellor, officiated at many graduation ceremonies.
Since 2016, he has donated to the University’s Charles Perkins Centre, supporting early-career researchers investigating diabetes, cardiovascular disease and obesity through the Nicholas Catchlove Early Career Researcher Development Fund, named in honour of his late son. He also established the biennial Nicholas Catchlove Lecture, a public event that aims to educate and inform the wider community about global health issues, developments and discoveries.
A world expert in health systems in both the public and private sectors, Dr Catchlove has spent decades working to improve the delivery of healthcare internationally.