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Biographical entry Robertson, Maurice Alexander (1906 - 1970)

MRCS 1930; FRCS 1935; MB BCh Cambridge 1930; LRCP 1930.

December 1970
Epidemiologist and General surgeon


Maurice Alexander Robertson was born in Aberdeen in 1906, and was educated at Sedburgh School and St John's College, Cambridge. He came to the London Hospital for the clinical course and qualified with the Conjoint Diploma in 1930, and also graduated MB BCh. After holding the usual junior hospital posts he obtained the FRCS in 1935, and went to South Africa in 1939 as surgeon to the Admiralty in Port Elizabeth. He established himself there in private practice and was appointed honorary surgeon to the Provincial Hospital, Port Elizabeth where he served with distinction for many years.

Robertson impressed his colleagues, and especially his trainees with his kindness to and interest in his patients, and his conscientious attention to his periods of duty. He was a member of the Hospital Board, President of the Cape Midland Branch, and a Federal Councillor. Unfortunately ill-health forced him to abandon clinical work in 1964, and he spent the last 6 years of his life at the Cancer Research Unit of the National Cancer Association in Johannesburg. Robertson's chief interest was in cancer epidemiology, and he completed three major surveys of the patterns of cancer in Southern Africa.

He died in Rhodesia in December 1970, and was survived by his wife and his daughter, Dr Bartlett, who was a paediatrician in Salisbury.

Sources used to compile this entry: [S Afr Med J 1971, 45, 620].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England