Ralph Beattie Blacket

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Ralph Beattie Blacket ( July 11, 1919 - 2010) was a Foundation Professor of Medicine UNSW Australia.[1][1]

Early life and education[edit]

Blacket was graduated from Sydney Boys High School Dux 1935. He attended Sydney University,[2] graduating in medicine in 1941, and won the University medal.


During World War II, Blacket joined the Australian Medical Corp in New Guinea, and served in 1942 with the 45 New Guinea 9th Division, earning the rank of Major.

After the war Blacket completed his residency at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospita. He was a Hallstrom Fellow in Cardiology, and studied at Sydney University while lecturing part-time, graduating with a Doctor of Medicine in 1957. He researched the disease Beriberi, and his thesis won the Peter Bancroft Prize.[3] He wrote a book about this called The Beri-beri Heart.

Blacket worked as a Professor of Medicine at the University of New South Wales,[4][5] and as Director of Medicine at two hospitals. He studied the causes of heart disease, and proposed that cholesterol was a factor in heart disease,[6] and was a co-founder of The Heart Foundation of Australia.[7]

Blanket participated in the Bunbury life study of clinical management of large hospitals, worked on medical advisory committees[8] and published about 120 papers in medical journals.

Blacket was appointed to the Order of Australia in 1984 for his contributions to medicine.[9][10]

IN 1999 Blacket was presented with an honorary degree by the University of New South Wales.[11]


Blacket was married to Margaret McIlrath and the couple had five children.


  1. ^ a b G. H Brown; William Munk; Richard Robertson Trail; Gordon Ethelbert Ward Wolstenholme (1984). Lives of the Fellows of the Royal College of Physicians of London. Royal College of Physicians. 
  2. ^ Who's who in Australia. Herald and Weekly Times Limited. 1988. p. 121. 
  3. ^ "Beri-beri Prize wins prize and doctorate". The Sydney Morning Herald - Jan 25, 1957.
  4. ^ "For new settlers, loyalty is gradually acquired". The Sydney Morning Herald, Sydney, New South Wales, January 26, 1984, page 36.
  5. ^ Robin Berwick Walker; Dave Roberts (December 1988). From scarcity to surfeit: a history of food and nutrition in New South Wales. New South Wales University Press. p. 127. 
  6. ^ "Jests By Doctors Under Attack" The Sydney Morning Herald - May 29, 1977 Peter Mahoney .
  7. ^ "Doctor made breakthrough on heart disease'. Sydney Morning Herald, January 26, 2009
  8. ^ Thomas Bourne Turner (1981). Part of medicine, part of me: musings of a Johns Hopkins dean. Johns Hopkins Medical School. p. 229. 
  9. ^ "Australia Day1984 Honours". Commonwealth of Australia Gazette.
  10. ^ Medical Journal of Australia. Australasian Medical Publishing Company. 1984. p. 368. 
  11. ^ "Honorary Degree and Fellowship holders". University of New South Wales website.

External links[edit]