Council Members


The Council is comprised of nine members: six members are registered health practitioners and three members are laypersons.  The Council currently has one layperson vacancy.

Members are appointed by the Minister of Health for a term of up to three years.  A member can be re-appointed for a further three-year term up to a maximum of three consecutive terms (i.e. nine years).

Helen Walker

 Lay Member

Helen Walker was appointed to the Council as a lay member in 2010 and currently convenes the Council's Professional Standards Committee.  Rurally based, Helen has held governance positions for a range of community-based organisations over the last 25 years. These include Red Cross, School Trustees Association and President of Waipawa Musical and Dramatic Club, with her passion being Musical Director of operas and musical theatre. Helen is a Trustee for the New Zealand Singing School, Chairman of the Central Ethics Committee, a Kaitiaki/Guardian of the Turnbull Library, Director of Health Hawkes Bay and with her husband runs a successful farming operation in Central Hawkes Bay. Helen was a Director of Unison Networks until 2010, the Hawkes Bay District Health Board from 2001 to 2007 and Chairman of the Central Hawkes Bay Consumers' Power Trust until 2003. She has a BSc (Massey) majoring in physiology and is a member of the Institute of Directors New Zealand.

Dr Andrew Warmington


Dr Andrew Warmington BHB MBChB, FANZCA Anaesthetist.  Dr Warmington is an anaesthetist in both public and private practice in Auckland.   He gained his fellowship in 1992.  He was appointed to the staff at Greenlane and National Women’s Anaesthesia departments in the same year and continues his involvement at National Women’s and the Greenlane Surgical Centre.  Dr Warmington has had professional involvement with anaesthesia techicians since 1993 when he was the anaesthesia technician liaison office for Greenlane Hospital and continues in a similar role for the wider Auckland City Hospital.  Dr Warmington started as an examiner for anaesthesia technicians in 1996 and was Chief Examiner from 2002 to 2006 including involvement in a major revamp of the examination.  He currently continues to examine for NZATS.  Dr Warmington was a lecturer for AUT from 1995 to 2002 writing and marking papers for the anaesthesia technology programme.  Dr Warmington has represented the New Zealand Society of Anaesthetists on NZATS executive committee since 2003.  He is a former president of the New Zealand Society of Anaesthetists (2007 to 2009) and currently Vice President of the Society.

Nicola Swain

Lay member

Associate Professor Nicola Swain was appointed to the council as a lay member in late 2018. She is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychological Medicine, Dunedin School of Medicine, University of Otago. At the medical school she teaches a wide range of medical psychology topics and researches pain management, violence prevention and well-being. She has published over 50 peer-reviewed journal articles. Nicola has been, and is currently, involved in a number of boards including Chairperson of Carers Otago, President of The Associated New Zealand ME Society, (ANZMES), School Board of Trustees, Southern Health and Disability Ethics Committee, and the Book Discussion Scheme Advisory Board. Nicola is also current President of the New Zealand Pain Society.

Ruth Beeston

A registered medical laboratory scientist, Ruth was appointed to the Medical Sciences Council in June 2019.

Erolia Rooney

Erolia, a registered medical laboratory scientist, was appointed to the Medical Sciences Council in June 2019.

Varsha Desai

A registered medical laboratory technician, Varsha was appointed to the Medical Sciences Council in June 2019.

Brett Besley

Brett is an anaesthetic technician and was appointed to the Medical Sciences Council in June 2019.   

Natasha Caldwell (Packer)

Natasha is a registered medical laboratory scientist who was appointed to the Medical Sciences Council in June 2019.