John Wright had graduated with honours in medicine from Sydney University in 1955 and was appointed to the professorial units of the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney. He had completed a FRACS degree in Australia and went on to become senior surgical registrar and surgical superintendent until he departed in 1960 for post-graduate experience in cardio-thoracic surgery in England and the United States.
He was senior registrar in the UK Liverpool region and was later appointed to Fellowships of Stanford University and the University of Michigan. He gained honorary Fellowships of the American Colleges of Surgeons and Chest Physicians and Membership of The (US) Society of Thoracic Surgeons.
He was appointed cardio-thoracic surgeon to the Prince Henry and Prince of Wales hospitals in Sydney in 1963 and consulted at 10 hospitals in New South Wales. He subsequently became head of Cardio-thoracic Surgery at the Prince Henry Hospital with a conjoint professorial appointment at the University of NSW.
In 1985, he was suddenly appointed foundation head of Paediatric Cardio-thoracic Surgery at the Sydney Children’s Hospital. That promised to be a major step forward but the new post was without substance, or qualified staff. It was a subterfuge and the post had been invented as a means of isolating and denying him control of a unique, Australian, surgical innovation.
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