A Tribute to Dr Bill Williams
The medical community have lost a treasured colleague in Dr Bill Williams (pictured above right).
Dr Williams died suddenly and unexpectedly at his home in Torquay on September 12th, a week before his 58th birthday. He was a much loved, valued and trusted doctor and will be missed by many, especially his immediate family, to whom he was completely devoted.
Bill’s interest, intellect and influence extended well beyond his local community. He contributed directly to international medicine through journals such as The Lancet, and indirectly through activism. He could not the reconcile the enormity of the threat of nuclear war to human health with the doctor’s purpose to heal people, and became prominent on the world stage as a co-founder of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear weapons (ICAN) and a past President and Board member of the Medical Association for the Prevention of War (MAPW).
Bill was a passionate advocate for Aboriginal health and travelled regularly to practice in remote Northern Western Desert communities. Many members of the Pintubi community from Kintore in the Northern Territory travelled to Torquay to attend Bill’s funeral on September 23rd.
One trip north gave rise to his acclaimed book, Bleed, which described the incredible physical and emotional journey of his partner Gisela’s brain haemorrhage in a remote riverbed west of Alice Springs, some 1500km from the nearest brain surgeon in Adelaide. As an experienced GP, Bill was able to not only explain complex neuroscience in lay terms, but he described and highlighted the skill and professionalism of the people who staff our hospitals and deal with crises every day. Yet he was also an astute observer of the experience of patient and family, and how their human needs can become neglected in the hospital encounter.
Epworth’s Dr Anne Stephenson said Dr Williams understood people and their needs.
Read more about Bill on the Geelong Advertiser website.
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