The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists have honoured Ngaruawahia-born psychiatrist Graham Mellsop in part for his ongoing dedication to quality improvement for patients.
The Waikato Clinical School professor of psychiatry (RANZCP) has had an illustrious trans-Tasman career spanning more than four decades and held many academic, clinical and leadership positions in both Australia and New Zealand.
The College citation award was also for his long and valuable services to the College and his significant international involvement.
Born in Ngaruawahia in January 1942, Prof Mellsop showed early promise as an athlete but it was in the area of medicine and then psychiatry that he made his biggest mark. He attended Hamilton Boys’ High School and graduated from Otago University in 1966.
His roles in New Zealand – including as Professor and Deputy Dean at Wellington Medical School, Clinical Director of Health Waikato’s Mental Health and Addictions Service, and Professor of Psychiatry at Waikato Clinical School – have been interspersed with several years directing clinical services in Victoria and Queensland.
Prof Mellsop has also contributed significantly to College activity during this time, in the areas of governance and leadership, policy work and educational development. His service to the College began in 1974, as Chief Coordinating Secretary of examinations and soon after, Censor-in-Chief. Since that time, Professor Mellsop has served on General Council, the New Zealand National Committee, the Quality Assurance Committee (including a period as Chair), the Regional Issues Committee, the Board of Practice Standards, and the Board of Professional and Community Relations. He also accepted the position of Chair of the newly restructured Board of Education in 2007, and led the Board through its first two crucial years to 2009.
Prof Mellsop has made significant contributions to psychiatry internationally, having served as a zonal representative and board member of the World Psychiatric Association (WPA), and consulting for several Asia-Pacific nations in collaboration with the World Health Organisation (WHO). Most recently, his involvement has extended to working with the WPA-WHO Workgroup on International Classification and Diagnostic Systems.
Prof Mellsop has provided mentoring and support of Maori psychiatrists and other Maori mental health professionals, and through his clinical work and research has also made valuable contributions to the Maori mental health and addiction sector.
Despite all of these achievements, Prof Mellsop sees himself as a clinical psychiatrist who has always had a commitment to improving the lives of his patients and their families. His passion and commitment have been instrumental in kindling the interest of many students and colleagues to pursue psychiatry as a specialty.
Prof Mellsop is held in the highest regard both by the College and by his peers for his services to psychiatry locally, nationally and internationally.
Professor Graham Mellsop - Background
MB, ChB (Otago) DPM, MD (Melb), FRANZCP
Born Ngaruawahia 27/1/1942
Educated at Hamilton Boys' High School
MB ChB (Otago) 1966, DPM (Melb) 1970, MD (Melb) 1972, MRCPsych (Eng) 1972,
MRANZCP 1972, FRANZCP 1979
HS / HP, Auckland Hospital 1967
Trainee Psychiatrist, Victorian Department of Health, Australia 1968 - 1970
Third Assistant, Department of Psychiatry, University of Melbourne, and Research Psychiatrist, Parkville Psychiatric Unit 1971 - 1972
Second Assistant, Department of Psychiatry, University of Melbourne, and Honorary Psychiatrist, Royal Melbourne Hospital, 1973 - 1974
Consultant Psychiatrist-in-charge, Ward 10, Auckland Hospital 1974 - 1975
Consultant establishing pilot, research, Community Mental Health Centre for "high migrant" population, Brunswick, Melbourne 1975 - 1976
Chief Psychiatrist, Research and Education Branch, State Mental Health Services, Victoria: Clinical Director, Parkville Psychiatric Unit; Senior Associate, Department of Psychiatry, University of Melbourne 1976 - 1982
Professor and Head, Department of Psychological Medicine, Wellington School of Medicine, and Clinical Director, Wellington Adult Mental Health Service 1982 - 1994
Deputy Dean, Wellington School of Medicine 1992 - 1994
Director, Regional Mental Health Services, West Moreton Region, Queensland; Director Clinical Services, Wolston Park Hospital Complex; Clinical Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Queensland 1994 - 1996
Director of Clinical Services and Authorised Psychiatrist, St Vincents Hospital and Community Psychiatric Services; Professorial Associate, University of Melbourne; Chief Adviser in Psychiatry, Inner and Eastern Health Care Network, Victoria 1996 - 1997
Clinical Services Director / Director Area Mental Health Services, Mental Health Services, Health Waikato; Honorary Professor, University of Auckland 1997 - 2000
Professor and Head, South Auckland Clinical School, Faculty of Medical and Health Services, University of Auckland 2001 - present
Professor Mellsop's expertise in mental health is based on 40 years of experience in the field of psychiatry. He has special interests in classification of psychiatric disorders, outcomes, culture and mental health service design. Currently working for Waikato Clinical School of Auckland University as Professor of Psychiatry. Professor Mellsop has authored more than150 research papers and publications on psychiatric disorders and has shared his expertise as a (guest) speaker at a variety of international mental health conferences.
His professional background includes providing expert advice at Board/Committee level for mental health services, hospitals and at psychiatric units in Australia, New Zealand, a variety of Asian Pacific countries and to the World Health Organisation. Graham's recent positions include: Professor and Head of the South Auckland Clinical School, Faculty Mental and Health Services (2000-2004) and Clinical Services Director Mental Health Services at Health Waikato (1997-2000).
Professor Mellsop holds a Fellowship of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists and was elected as Distinguished Fellow, Pacific Rim of Psychiatrists in recognition of achievements, contributions and leadership in the field of psychiatry.