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Meet Dr Ruth Parsell - Westfield Local Heroes 2021

Taking the hospital to patients

Dedicated. Passionate. Empowering

Trauma specialist Dr Ruth Parsell provides the best possible care to critically ill and injured people in Sydney and beyond.

Ruth is deputy medical director at CareFlight, a charity that takes the emergency department to the patient in a state-of-the-art medical helicopter.

Ruth is a former paramedic who was inspired to study medicine because she was so impressed by the work of the CareFlight team, who are based at Westmead.

Ruth provides a rapid diagnosis of the patient’s condition and takes quick action, often delivering life-saving care with her team in the air on the way to hospital.

Ruth’s incentive is the knowledge that she saves lives and prevents disability. This is especially rewarding when the patient is a child. “It is so rewarding to see people who are so unwell go on to return to their loved ones and their usual activities,” she says.

Ruth’s colleagues see her as a role model who proves that women can successfully combine raising a family and a challenging career in aeromedical medicine.

She was surprised to be nominated as a Westfield Local Hero. “I hope the nomination raises awareness of what we do. It certainly motivates me to continue to train hard to be better, undertake research projects and train others in our field.”

Westfield Local Heroes are nominated and voted for by their communities, with the three top finalists per Westfield centre each awarded a $10,000 grant for their affiliated organisation. CareFlight will use its funds to buy a 3D printer and a portable ultrasound device.

For further information on the Westfield Local Heroes program, click here

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