For his analysis of the coronavirus pandemic, health expert Norman Swan of ABC will be awarded one of Australia’s highest honors.
Dr. Swan will be inducted into the Order of Australia on Thursday, along with 735 others, including actor David Wenham, as part of the Australia Day honours list.
The physician of Scottish ancestry will win the prestigious award “for distinguished service to the broadcast media as a science and health commentator.”
Acceptance into the order will allow him to add the suffix “AM” to his name. It is the second level of Australia’s highest honor, following the OAM.
He will also be included on the newly constructed Covid-19 Honour Roll, which recognizes 77 Australians for their support of Australia’s response to the pandemic.
For his analysis on the coronavirus outbreak, ABC health guru Norman Swan will be awarded one of Australia’s highest honors.
Dr. Swan has not treated patients since joining the ABC in 1982, but he still has his license because his job in the media is considered medical practice.
The membership in the Order of Australia will be granted purely on the basis of his media commentary.
“As someone who chose to become Australian and loves this country, this is an incredible honor,” he told the Daily Mail Australia.
Six Australians will be made companions of the order, the highest existing tier, in addition to 47 officers, 177 members, and 506 others who will get an OAM.
There will also be 30 recipients of awards of the Order of Australia’s military division, 217 recipients of meritorious awards, and 64 recipients of outstanding and noteworthy awards.
They will be announced on Australia Day with the Australian of the Year, body image activist Taryn Brumfitt, and the Young Australian of the Year, soccer player Awer Mabil.
During the coronavirus epidemic, when he was one of Australia’s most recognized experts, Dr. Swan became a household name.
Over the past four decades, Dr. Swan has received numerous honors and medals for his work at the ABC, including a Gold Walkley in 1988 for exposing false research.
What is the Australian Order of Merit?
Since its establishment in 1975, over 16,000 Australians have been inducted into the Order, and another 29,000 have been awarded a medal.
It is a contemporary version of centuries-old British chivalric orders that recognizes outstanding achievement and service.
There are four tiers of membership, including the discontinued knight/dame. The remaining categories are companion, officer, and member.
The Order of Australia Medal can also be given to Australians for “service deserving of special recognition.”
The honorees, according to Governor-General David Hurley, have had a substantial impact on the local, national, and worldwide levels and are “simply inspiring.”
They go above and beyond, come from all over the country, and contribute in every conceivable way every day. These are the individuals who see us through both good and bad times. He stated, “They are the first to arrive and the last to leave.”
“They are almost always excessively humble, but I urge recipients to set aside their modesty today – it’s vital that they know how much they are appreciated.”
Dr. Swan reported on health concerns for decades, winning the Gold Walkley in 1988 and serving as the director of Radio National for three years.
During the coronavirus epidemic, when he was one of Australia’s most recognized experts, he became a household name.
Early on, he urged for a robust public health response to the virus and backed lockdowns, masks, and company closures.
Critics referred to him as a Covid doomsayer who advocated worst-case situations and made dire forecasts that turned out to be wildly inaccurate.
In November, his integrity was called into question when he stated that the deadly heart attacks of 52-year-old cricket icon Shane Warne and Labor senator Kimberley Kitching were likely Covid-related.
Dr. Swan told Daily Mail Australia at the time that it was “too much of a coincidence” since they both died following recent Covid illnesses, but was forced to apologize after Senator Kitching’s enraged relatives informed him that she had never contracted the virus.
In the months preceding her death, Senator Kitching suffered from hyperthyroidism, although her symptoms were improving.
During conversations with the broadcaster’s management, ABC acknowledged that his comments violated its editorial standards and cautioned him.
In 1976, he earned a medical degree from the University of Aberdeen and a Diploma in Child Health from the Royal Colleges of Physicians and Surgeons of London.
Medicine was not his first passion; as a child, he desired to be an actress, but his Jewish mother disapproved.
In November, Dr. Swan was criticized for stating that the deadly heart attacks of cricket legend Shane Warne and Senator Kimberley Kitching may have been caused by Covid, despite the fact that Senator Kitching (pictured) never took Covid.
He applied to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art after completing medical school, but his audition was “embarrassing and amateurish because I forgot my lines.”
Instead, he specialized in paediatrics, went to Australia during a quarter-life crisis, and worked at the Royal Alexandra Hospital for Children in Sydney while publishing medical articles on the side.
Then, in 1982, he noticed an advertisement for a position at ABC working on medical programming and applied. His time spent helping patients was limited.
Dr. Swan launched The Health Report on ABC Radio in 1985 and has continued to host it ever since, concurrently with the pandemic-related Coronacast.
He was awarded the Gold Walkley for an inquiry that exposed the bogus research of disgraced gynecologist William McBride, resulting in his disbarment.
In 1988, Dr. Swan was awarded the Gold Walkley for an inquiry that discovered false research conducted by disgraced gynecologist William McBride, resulting in his disbarment.
Then, in 1990, he oversaw ABC Radio National for three years, increasing its popularity by 30% and hiring a number of future stars.
Then, in 1990, he oversaw ABC Radio National for three years, during which time its audience grew by 30% and several future stars were hired.
Since then, he has hosted the science-based television programs Catalyst and Quantum and has appears on other ABC programs.
Dr. Swan served as The Biggest Loser’s principal health expert for six years, alongside trainers Michelle Bridges and Steve ‘Commando’ Willis.
Depending on your evaluation of his Covid coverage, he capitalized on his celebrity or notoriety to write two books: So You Think You Know What’s Good For You in 2021 and So You Want To Live Longer in 2022.
Distinguished figures to be honored on Australia Day
Taryn Brumfitt, body image activist and Australian of the Year, is a campaigner.
Soccer player and Young Australian of the Year Awer Mabil
Companion of the Order of Australia posthumously awarded to Archie Roach “for eminent service to the performing arts as a songwriter and musician, to indigenous rights and reconciliation, and through support of emerging First Nations artists.”
Pru Goward, politician, was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) “for distinguished service to the people and Parliament of New South Wales and to women’s affairs.”
“For distinguished service to the arts as a film and television director, producer, and screenwriter,” awarded to Phillip Noyce, AO.
Jean Kittson was awarded the Order of Australia (AM) “for significant service to the arts as an actor, writer, and comedian.”
Bess Nungarrayi Price, activist, politician, and mother of Senator Jacinta Price, AM, “for outstanding service to the Northern Territory Parliament and the Indigenous community.”
“for significant service to the performing arts as an actor and producer”
The Order of Australia Medal was awarded to Nicola Cerrone “for service to the jewelry industry and the community.”
Claudia Karvan was awarded the Order of Australia Medal (OAM) “for service to the film and television industry”