The need for technical assistance in the cardiology department was evident from the very beginning of the service.   Soon after Dr Bowerbank acquired the hospital's first electrocardiograph machine and a Kendrick basal metabolism apparatus, the Hospital Board agreed to - 

"a specially trained nurse to be appointed as a technician to attend to the electro-cardiograph and metabolism machine, at a salary of £200/annum (non-resident) from 1/4/1927".

The nurse appointed to this position was Muriel Tattersall

In 1940, Joan Stevenson-Wright succeeded Muriel Tattersall and an additional nurse/technician, Sister Sheila Carmody, was appointed in 1944, remaining there until 1955.   Sister Stevenson-Wright remained in the Department until 1964.

By then it had been decided that the technician role did not require to be carried out by a nurse, and a number of Clerk/Technicians were appointed.  Their role expanded from recording and mounting ECGs, to include roles in the cardiac catheterisation laboratory and in the cardiac theatre.


In the late 1950s and 1960s, technicians employed in both Cardiology and Hypertension had the designation of Clerk Technician.   Staff with the same designation were also employed in other areas such as the Chest Clinic and possibly in the Pathology Laboratory.   From sources available to me, it has not always been possible to identify where a Clerk Technician was employed. 
Below I have listed names and tenure for those Clerk Technicians whose precise role has not been identified, in the hope that a reader will recognise the name(s) of person(s) who worked in either Cardiology or Hypertension.

Elizabeth Penhale1957 - 1959::Judith Dawson1958 - 1960
Margaret Lester1960::Helen Hamilton1961 - 1962
Gleeda Trigg1962 - 1963::Judith O'Connor1963 - 1964
Andrea Redmond1965 - 1966::Valerie Bird1965 - 1968
Linda Crawford1966::Elva Olliver1966 - 1967
Janet Rodgers1966 - 1967::Christine Campbell1967 - 1968
Carolyn Studd1969::Patricia Thornton1969

In 1969, the designation "Clerk/Technician" was replaced by "Technician".

I would welcome any further information on the above



In 1969 the NZ Society of Cardiological Technicians was established and a three year training course was set up at Green Lane Hospital.  Trainee technicians from Wellington Hospital were able to enrol in the course by correspondence, and received tuition from local cardiologists, respiratory physicians, biomedical technicians and others.  Associate membership of the Society was awarded after one year of study and full membership after a final examination at the end of three years, held at Green Lane Hospital. 
In time the Society was renamed the Society of Cardiopulmonary Technology, as it included respiratory technicians. 

In 1972 a Charge Cardiology Technician appointment was created to oversee the work of a growing establishment of technicians.

From the mid 1960s until 1989, cardiology technicians' duties included monitoring pressures in theatre for cardiac surgical procedures.   Subsequently this role was taken over by anaesthetic technicians.

Since the 1980s, when echocardiography began to flourish and cardiac pacing numbers increased, additional roles for technicians developed, and in time individual technicians specialised in particular areas of cardiology.   More than ever, the operation of a modern cardiology service depended on the skills and knowledge of these valuable staff members.


Ian Weaver

1972 - 1975


Frances Stewart

1975 - 1977

Gwen Hunter

1977 - 1984

1984 - 1989

Helen Templeton

1989 - 1991

1991 - 1994

Carol Allan

1994 - 1995

Amanda Garlick

1995 - 1996

Alison Young


Hazel Milliken

1998 - 2003

Graham Orsbourn

2003 - 2006

Stephanie Morrison


Cardiology Technicians have come to be known as Cardiac Technologists in recent years.

A major change in training and certification of cardiac technologists occurred in the early years of the 21st century.   The previous method of training which operated under the auspices of the Association of Cardiopulmonary Technicians was replaced with a university-based system.

To enroll in this new training programme, students are required to be a graduate or to possess an appropriate health professional qualification requiring at least three years tertiary level study.
The postgraduate two-year course is run nationally by the University of Otago.   This leads to a PG Diploma in Medical Technology (PGDipMedTech).  Such a diploma, together with the Cardiac Clinical Physiologists practical examination, entitles the bearer to be known as a Clinical Cardiac Physiologist although in Wellington at least, the term Cardiac Technologist seems to have remained.   Students can elect to take just the first year of this course and receive the PG Certificate in Medical Technology.
At the time of the transition from the old ASCT-based training, there was provision for existing trained cardiology technicians to become cardiac physiologists under a grandparent scheme.

The Society of Cardiopulmonary Technicians, the professional body, conducts an unstructured one year programme leading to a Certificate of Physiological Measurement for the second tier workforce - Physiology Technicians.

For the purposes of this history, I will still refer to these important members of the Cardiology staff as Cardiology Technicians.

However, it is clear to me that there has been a significant up-skilling of this workforce since I retired in 2000.
To a degree, this change has been essential to allow some of the new services provided by Cardiology to happen.  Such upskilling is particularly evident in the Pacing and EP service.

In the following pages are listed the names of all the former technicians that I have been able to identify, and where known, their tenure in the service.

Muriel Tattersall1927 - 1939::Joan Stevenson-
1940 - 1964
Sheila Carmody1944 - 1955::Jennifer Berger1962 - 1965
Rosemary Hishon1963 - 1964::Janette Virtue1964
Beverley Paul1964 - 1968::Gay Bernau1964 - 1965
1968 - 1970
Paula Watson1964 - 1967
1969 - 1974
::Helen Wright1964 - 1965
Loretto Direen1964 - 1969::Dina Werman1965
Mary Mortlock1965 - 1967::Alison Hazledine1965 - 1966
Cherry Twaddle1965 - 1966::Barbara Leeks1966 - 1967
Katherine Anderson1966 - 1967::Susan Harding1966 - 1969
Edwina Joseph1967 - 1968::Pamela Harvey1967 - 1969
Kristen Wickens1967 - 1968::Suzanne Dixon1968 - 1969
1969 - 1970
Barbara Anderson1968 - 1969::Helen Anthony1968 - 1969
Anthea Denning-
1969 - 1971::Frances Kempthorne1969 - 1972
Ronna Mitchell1969 - 1970::Beverley Underwood1969 - 1971
Ruth Warburton1970::Vivienne Gledhill1970 - 1971
Joy Vertongen1970 - 1973::Helen Tucker1971 - 1973
Frances Stewart1971 - 1977
1980 - 1982
::Karen Williams1971 - 1972
Kathleen Hirtzel1972 - 1974::Diane Lightbown1972 - 1977
Ian Weaver1972 - 1975::Susanne Leech1972 - 1973
Carol Allan 
  nee McIntyre
1973 - 1977
1988 - 1995
::Margaret Simpson1973 - 1977
Sue Pankhurst 
   nee Barlow
1973 - 1976
1986 - 1994
::Shelley Nippierd 
  nee Woodward
1974 - 1976
1976 - 1977
Irene Barrowclough1974::Gwen Turner
  nee Hunter
1974 - 1985
Maria Hulsbosch-
1975 - 1976::Brigitta Janus1975 - 1976
Debra Eastwood1976 - 1978::Michael Harte1976 - 1977
1977 - 1978
Louise Ritchie1976::Petra Peters1976 - 1978
Kathleen Lang1976 - 1979
1981 - 1984
::Susan Reive1977 - 1980
Craig Wilson1977::Elizabeth Garbutt1977 - 1978
1977 - 1978::Kristine Shand1977 - 1981
1982 - 1984
Kim Gaywood1977 - 1981
1982 - 1984
::Stephanie Perry1978 - 1981
Catherine Birt1978 - 1980
1981 - 1982
::Louise Carroll1978 - 1979
Deirdre Bishop1978 - 1979::Jennifer Wiggins1978 - 1980
Lynette Delany1978 - 1980::Maria Vlahovich
  nee Hrstich
1978 - 1984
Vikki D'Ath1979 - 1990
2012 -
::Alison Shaw1979 - 1980
Jan Mulder1979 - 1982::Robin Dawson1980
Amy Young1981 - 1984::Norah Martens1981 - 1986
Michael Fiford1982::  


Brenda McQuillan1982 - 1983::Debra Wyber1982 - 1984
Graham Barkus1982 - 1984::Catherine Goggin1982 - 1987
2001 - 2002
Rosalind Grant1983 - 1985::Juliet Barleben-
Karen Howarth1984 - 1985::Nicola Barnes1984 - 1985
Donna Bishop1984 - 1988::Dorothy Hancock1984 - 1985
Helen Templeton1985 - 1987
1988 - 1991
1995 - 1997
1998 - 2001
::Julie Baine1985 - 1987
Hazel Milliken1985 - 2003::Mark Burrows1985
Bridget LeFort1986 - 1988::Judith Gordon1986 - 1994
Teressa Johnston1987 - 1988::Theresa Hodges1987 - 1993
Andrea Stuart1987 - 1988::Nalini Pama1987
Paula Rhodes
  nee Watson
1987 - 2012::Susan Brady
  nee Moss
1988 - 1994
2004 - current
Valerie Randall1988 - 1989::Karen Mason1989 - 1990
Karen O'Brien1989 - ?::Kaaren Tutt1990 - ?
Talia Canvin
  nee Grime
1994 - 2001::Sue Winter1994 - 2012
Barbara Bassett1994 - 1996::Tom Cunningham1994 - 1995
Karen O'Leary1995 - 1996::Amanda Garlick1995 - 1996
Colleen Brown1995 - 1997::Sheryl Waite1996
Fiona Wilson1997::Sarah Bainbridge
  nee Parkin
1999 - 2007
Susan Cairns1997 - 1999::Alison Young1996 - 1997
Simon Undrill1997 - 2001::Daniel Yejerla1997 - 1998
Paula Jones1998 - 2012::Joanne Burkett1998 - 1999
Beth Harris1999 - 2001::Frank Hoffman2000
Claire Lopdell2001 - 2002::Aaron Hart2001 - 2006
Joanne Campbell2001 - 2002::Anna Ferguson2002
Charlotte Wood2002::Julie Eyres2002
Jasmine Sobitharaj2002 - 2005::Kaye Mayo2002 - 2003
Nadine Tierney2003 - 2009::Graham Orsbourn2003 - 2006
Robert McDonald2004::Janine Pepper2005 - 2010
Doris Chuma2005 - 2008::Ellen Connor2006 - 2008
Nicholas Small2006::Nooralam Jamal2007
Kate Swinson2007 - 2009::Michelle Bayles2007
Lauren Mills
  nee Bishop
2008 - 2011::Lisa Johnson2008 - 2012
Nicola Gardiner2011 - 2012
Karen Tansley ::Helen Wineera 
Kaaren Horvath ::Jan Muir 
Nicky Murray ::Julie Paine 
Sue Rowe ::Sandra Clark 
Sarah Golding ::Heather Hall 
Moana Enoka ::Nikki Trask 
Elwyn ? ::Janice ? 
Pamela ? ::Kate ? 

Several surnames are unknown.  Ron would welcome any knowledge of these missing names, and of missing dates of tenure.




On 26 October, 2012, the Cardiology Service said goodbye to Paula.
Paula, who holds the record by far for length of service as a Cardiology Technician, first joined Cardiology in 1964.   Apart from the usual recording of ECGs and duties in the Cath Lab, Paula and was one of two technicians who participated in the early cardiac surgery programme.
Paula went off on OE in 1967, returning to the Cardiology Department in 1969.  She remained there until 1974 when she took time off to raise a family.

Paula returned to work part-time in 1987 and continued with Cardiology until her retirement.   This represents a total tenure as a Cardiology Technician of 33 years, a length of stay in Cardiology exceeded only by Peter Leslie!

Paula's greatest contribution to the Cardiology Service was in the field of pacemaker and defibrillator implantation and follow-up.   Her understanding of the complexities of newer devices and of the issues experienced by recipient patients was always impressive.  In this field Paula has been a great mentor to both technical and medical staff.

This is a very well-earned retirement and all associated with the Cardiology Service wish Paula well.

A truly long service!

Last updated 8 October 2021.