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Our Department

Formed in 1998, Barwon Health is one of the largest and most comprehensive regional health services in Australia, providing care at all stages of life and circumstance.  Barwon Health comprises University Hospital Geelong, McKellar Centre, Alan David Lodge (Grovedale) and has five major community health centres that provide a range of services to the Barwon region. 


Services available through Barwon Health cover the full spectrum from primary care, community services, aged care, rehabilitation, mental health, emergency and acute care. With the exception of neurosurgery and transplantation, virtually all other specialties are available. 


Geelong Hospital changed its name to University Hospital Geelong in July 2014 to reflect the increased provision of training to the healthcare sector through its association with Deakin University and other training institutions.  The Department of Surgery, University Hospital Geelong is part of the Deakin University School of Medicine Clinical School and provides teaching excellence through dedicated and experienced  academic surgeons and staff.

Professor David Watters
Director of Surgery

David Watters is a Past RACS President (2015)  who since 2000 has been Professor of Surgery for Barwon Health in Geelong, initially with Melbourne (2000–2010), and then Deakin University (since 2011).  Prof Watters is a general surgeon with interests in general, colorectal and endocrine surgery and is actively engaged in advocating for global surgery, having spent almost 20 years in developing countries including Papua New Guinea, Hong Kong, Zambia and South Africa. In recognition of his contribution to surgery and surgical training in PNG Prof Watters was awarded Member of the Order of Australia in 2018 and the OBE (2012), and Rotary’s Paul Harris Fellowship (2000). 

Professor Irwin Faris
Foundation Professor of Surgery

Irwin Faris was the Foundation Professor of Surgery at Geelong Hospital and the University of Melbourne (1992–1999), former Chief of Surgery (1997–1999) and is the former Editor-in-Chief of the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Surgery.  Prof Faris was the first chairman of the RACS Board in Vascular Surgery.  In recognition of his contributions Prof Faris was the recipient of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons Medal in 2001.  After retirement, on 6th February 2000 at St Pauls Anglican Cathedral Prof Faris took holy orders and was ordained in the Diocese of Melbourne as a deacon to serve at Christ Church, Geelong.

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