Exordium - John Russell Ritchie

Name: John Russell Ritchie

MB ChB – New Zealand (1934)

Date of Birth: 27 March 1909
Date of Death: 7 May 1976

John Russell Ritchie was born on March 27, 1909 in Dunedin. He graduated from the University of New Zealand in 1933 with his MB ChB (Bachelor of Medicine, Masters of Surgery). In 1937, he gained his Diploma in Anaesthetics from the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons. Ritchie worked at a variety of hospitals and as ship’s surgeon until settling into private general practice from 1938 to 1949. Until his death in 1976, Ritchie was also involved in teaching anaesthetics at the University of New Zealand later University of Otago. His contributions to teaching and serving as anaesthetist were combined with his significant early research into deaths under anaesthesia led to the awarding of Foundation Fellow to the Faculty of Anaesthetists, Royal Australasian College of Surgeons in 1952.


  1. John Russell Ritchie, ‘Exordium’, Application Form, 1952, Geoffrey Kaye Museum of Anaesthetic History: VGKM 6903.25.

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