Vale Angela Worthington

Coronary Care staff and the wider Calvary Mater Newcastle family have mourned the death of trailblazing heart specialist Angela Worthington.

Hundreds of family members, friends, colleagues and patients gathered at her funeral service earlier this month to celebrate an extraordinary woman whose life was cut tragically short by Motor Neurone Disease.

At home she was a wife and mother to two children of whom she was enormously proud. By day she cut a striking figure as she walked her patient rounds, trained junior doctors, and went about her business as the hospital’s Director of Cardiology.

Angela was a striking redhead with a larger than life presence, the personality to go with it, a quirky sense of humour and an individual style that became the stuff of legends.

Staff recall it as a ‘red letter day’ when Angela was appointed as Calvary Mater Newcastle’s first ever female cardiologist and another when she was appointed as the first female director.

Calvary Mater Newcastle was where she wanted to stay.

Angela believed in a collaborative relationship with the nursing team. She was often heard remarking to junior doctors on ward rounds that:

“The most important person in this room is the patient, and the second most important person in the room is the nurse caring for that patient.”

She felt strongly about her responsibility for training the next generation of trainee cardiology doctors. She also felt strongly about grammar, spelling, and being punctual (low and behold anyone who was late to her university lectures).

Here or in her private practice, Angela’s patients were her main centre of attention. Many called her by her first name (perfectly fine by her), all benefited from the skill, advocacy, humanity and empathy she brought to caring for them.
Angela made a difference and is greatly missed.

Her legacy will live on in many ways, including through a grant that is being established in her name for research into Motor Neurone Disease. It’s testament to her that she wanted to assist research into the degenerative disease, its causes and treatments so that others don’t have to experience what she and her family did.

So far, online fundraising has passed the halfway mark to the $100,000 target. You can find out more about the fund and how to contribute at

Vale Angela Worthington – passionate, compassionate, fearless, and still making a difference.