Who is Rhodanthe?

Rhodanthe Lipsett OAM is an Australian midwife and author.

Specialising in infant and maternal health, Rhodanthe was awarded a Medal in the Order of Australia in 1992 for her services to Australian women and their families. In 1996, she was made a Fellow of the Australian College of Midwives in recognition of her work for the profession.

Rhodanthe Lipsett was born in South Australia and spent her early years on a fruit orchard at Cadell on the Murray River. She received her secondary education at the Presbyterian Girls’ College in Adelaide.

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Interview with Rhodanthe Lipsett

Rhodanthe Lipsett

Rhodanthe began her career as a nurse at the Adelaide Children’s Hospital, before gaining postgraduate experience at the Royal Adelaide Hospital. Having developed a strong love for working with mothers and their babies she began her life as a midwife in 1947 in Broken Hill District Hospital. Rhodanthe then further expanded her qualifications by gaining her Infant Welfare Certificate from Tresillian in Sydney. Rhodanthe then travelled to England where she spent the next two years gaining further experience in maternal and child health.

In 1951, on her return to Australia, Rhodanthe moved to Canberra to work at Canberra Hospital, later moving into community care at Maternal and Baby Health Centres and visiting rural mothers and their newborn babies.

In 1971, Rhodanthe returned to the profession she loved. Joining the staff of the Queen Elizabeth II Family Centre in Canberra where she spent the next 18 years providing professional support and practical information for mothers and teaching parenting skills. By this time Rhodanthe was also teaching health care professionals both in the community and at the QE II.

Rhodanthe published her first book in 2004. In 2006, the Australian College of Midwives created the ‘Rhodanthe Lipsett Award’ worth $1000 in recognition of her work.

In early 2009 the Australian College of Midwives established the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Midwives Scholarship Fund. In September 2009 at the ACM National Conference held in Adelaide the then President of the College, Professor Pat Brodie, presented an award of recognition to Rhodanthe and announced that the Fund would, from that day forward, be known as the Rhodanthe Lipsett Indigenous Midwifery Fund.

Rhodanthe Lipsett and Former Australian Governor General, Dame Quentin Bryce

In 1992 Rhodanthe received an Order of Australia Medal for services to Australian women and their families. Since retirement, Rhodanthe has remained an active member of the College, and continues to be enthusiastically involved in furthering the welfare of mothers and their babies.Following her marriage to her husband John, there was a break in her career while she cared for their own three children. Rhodanthe and John continue live in Canberra.

Rhodanthe Lipsett is the world famous author of “Baby Care: Nurturing Your Baby, Your Way“.  This book was designed to help parents understand the needs of their baby with reassuring advise about the many ways to meet those needs. Royalties from sales of the book will go to the Rhodanthe Lipsett Fund.

Rhodanthe says that the first six weeks are the most difficult for new mothers, and it is important to assist, encourage and inspire them so that they experience more ‘up times’ than ‘down times’.

If they can experience less anxiety and more confidence in the early weeks, I believe it can set the pattern for the months and years ahead.

Baby Care

Author:   Rhodanthe Lipsett OAM

Price:     $34.99

Plus:      $15.50 postage & handling

Royalties from sales of the book will go to the Rhodanthe Lipsett Fund

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