Vale Professor Saxon D Smith

10 Apr, 2024 | News

The very sad news of Professor Saxon Smith’s passing was shared by AMA (NSW) this week. Professor Smith was a highly esteemed and much-loved Past President of AMA (NSW). He had a profound influence on dermatology over many years and his contributions to the profession, the welfare of his patients and colleagues was exemplary.

Born in 1976, he graduated medicine in 2000 from the University of Otago, New Zealand, earned a Master’s Degree in Health Law from the University of Sydney in 2006, and was a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. 

Professor Smith practiced dermatology at several teaching hospitals including St Vincent’s, John Hunter, Liverpool and Royal North Shore. Most recently he was in private practice in Gosford & St Leonards, and a visiting medical officer at the SAN in Wahroonga. 

In 2019 he was admitted to the AMA Roll of Fellows for services to medicine and the association and in the same year he received a Certificate of Meritorious Service from the Australasian College of Dermatologists for services in dermatology, education, research and college committees.

In 2022 he was made a member of the Order of Australia for significant service to medicine as a dermatologist and researcher and to professional societies.

Professor Smith presented at numerous national and international conferences and had more than 90 publications and more than 130 published abstracts in peer-reviewed journals. He received the Adrian Johnson Prize from the Australasian College of Dermatologists in 2010.

He served as AMA (NSW) President from 2014–2016 during which time he worked tirelessly to represent doctors and patients. He spent 6 years on the AMA Federal Council, 16 years on the AMA (NSW) Council and 10 years on the Board of Directors including as chair for 2 years. He is a past chair of the Australasian College of Dermatologists Representatives Committee & Public Affairs Committee.

As AMA (NSW) President, Professor Smith was a prominent spokesperson for the sun protection public health campaign. His ground-breaking research on sunscreen was pivotal in educating consumers about proper sunscreen usage. Prof. Smith’s research found many people were not aware that sunscreen had an expiry date; that it deteriorates when stored above 25 degrees; that it needs to be reapplied after two hours; and that you need two tablespoons to cover the whole body.

He was a Clinical Professor with ANU and an Honorary Associate with The University of Sydney.

In 2016 Professor Smith co-wrote a children’s book about eczema inspired by his then five-year-old son, who was affected by the condition. 

Professor Smith is survived by his wife Camille and son Elliot.

Author: Australian Medical Association
Title: Vale Professor Saxon Smith
URL: https://www.ama.com.au/ama-rounds/16-february-2024/articles/vale-professor-saxon-smith-am 

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