Besides Medical expertise and capability, which I admit are still the most important factors, what is the measure of a good doctor? Many people would agree that it is directly dependent upon the lengths he or she would go to in order to treat a patient or help a fellow human being. If you agree with this, then that makes Professor Dr. Geoffrey Edelsten a good doctor. Even though he has been deregistered and is no longer allowed to practice medicine (prof. and dr. refer to his philosophy and other degrees), his philanthropically driven activities still demonstrate the great lengths he will go to in order to help a fellow human being. This article will primarily about Geoffrey Walters Edelsten’s philanthropy, but I will also talk a little about Edelsten himself, who is currently sixty-nine years of age.
From the very beginning Edelsten was a good doctor if using the measure discussed at the opening of this article. He was so committed to treating his patients that when he opened his first private practice in Walget (located in New South Wales, Australia) he obtained a costly pilot’s license and private plane in order to treat patients in rural areas. Even then his charitable spirit shone through, because many of these patients could not afford treatment and he did not charge them. Over the years his fame mainly grew due to his transforming the idea of hospitals to include twenty-four hour openings, chandeliers and grand pianos. However, his fame is also due to the controversy surrounding his name. He was deregistered and banned from medical practice for allowing unqualified people to perform lazar surgery. Despite this ban, he does quite well for himself as an Australian medical entrepreneur and that affords his philanthropy.
Over the past thirty years Edelsten has donated considerable funds to numerous charities, including Music Rostrum Australia (which nurtures young musical talent), his alma mater (Mt. Scopus Memorial College), the Autistic Children’s Association, the Australian Sports Foundation and many junior sporting groups. Edelsten spent close to two million on philanthropy from 2009 to 2012 and one of the causes closest to his heart is the Fred Hollows Foundation (which provides vision care to Australian Aboriginals). This is because of his close relationship with the late professor Fred Hollows. Edelsten donates frequently to medical charities. Such charities include My Room (an organization whose mission is to improve patient outlook), the Royal Children’s Hospital (RCH) Cancer Centre, the Fight Cancer Foundation, and the American Women’s Auxiliary to the RCH. In fact, Edelsten is so supportive of charities that he and his second wife, Brynne Gordon (who is forty years his junior), asked that donations be made to a charity, Great Expectations Foundation, in lieu of wedding gifts.
Despite what you might hear about Geoffrey Edelsten, he was a good doctor if judging by the standards discussed at the beginning of this article. However, since he was deregistered one might call into question his medical expertise and capability. Edelsten is so well-known as an Australian medical entrepreneur who transformed the image of hospitals. But, he is only slightly less well-known for all the controversy surrounding his name. I only mentioned his deregistration above, but there is an even bigger scandal. He spent a year in jail for allegedly ordering an attack on a former patient. Nevertheless, through his philanthropy he goes to great lengths to help his fellow human.