Born in Carlow in 1935, Henry (Harry) Hynes enrolled in the UCD School of Medicine and graduated with a MB BCh BAO (Medicine) degree from the National University of Ireland in 1958. Shortly afterwards he married Ms Madeline Carberry and the couple emigrated to the United States of America where Dr Hynes undertook his postgraduate specialty training. He had a distinguished career as a clinician specialising in internal medicine and haematology and has been recognised for his dedicated service to his patients and for his commitment to clinical research throughout a rich career.
After graduating from UCD, Dr Hynes undertook an internship at St Francis Hospital, Wichita, Kansas and later completed residency and fellowship programmes at the Mayo Clinic. He earned a PhD in Internal Medicine and Haematology at the University of Minnesota and returned to Wichita in 1972 where he founded the Wichita Hematology Group. This group subsequently evolved into the Cancer Center of Kansas where Dr Hynes worked until his death in December 2000.
Dr Harry Hynes was instrumental in the founding of Hospice of Wichita (which was renamed as Hospice Inc, and ultimately the Harry Hynes Memorial Hospice). He is representative of a number of individuals in the community who in the early 1980's put into reality their dreams of establishing a hospice program to provide high quality care to terminally ill patients.
Certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine, and the American Subspecialty Boards of Medical Oncology and Hematology, throughout his career, Dr Hynes served on several national committees, was held in high esteem by his colleagues and the wider oncology community. Dr Hynes led the Wichita Community Clinical Oncology Programme as principal investigator and was honoured with a number of awards and recognitions including:
- Honorary Fellow, Faculty of Medicine, University College Dublin (1998)
- Eponymous National Cancer Institute (NCI) Wichita Community Clinical Oncology Program ‘Harry Hynes Award for Excellence in Clinical Research’ (2001)
- Received the first St Luke Physician Recognition Award from Via Christi Regional.
- Harry Hynes Memorial Hospice named in his honour.
Dr Hynes understood the difficult challenges cancer patients face in all phases of their illness, but especially when they reach the last stage. It was with this in mind that he initiated efforts in the late 1970's to start a hospice program in south central Kansas. Under his leadership, and with the help of other community members, the framework was laid for the establishment of Hospice of Wichita in 1983, the first and only non-profit hospice program in Sedgwick County.
Famous for his commitment to excellence with the mantra that "it be done right!", Dr Hynes’ commitment to his patients can be summarised by his own words which he strived throughout his career to make a reality.
"Terminally ill patients and their loved ones deserve nothing but the highest quality care."
The National Cancer Institute’s Community Clinical Oncology Program established the Harry Hynes Award in 2001 to recognize and acknowledge outstanding commitment by community investigators to clinical research. The award was named for Dr. Harry Hynes, the principal investigator of the Wichita Community Clinical Oncology Program, for his tremendous dedication and commitment to bringing clinical trials to the community setting.
Throughout his career, Dr Hynes retained close links with his alma mater. He established a fund which allowed the UCD Health Sciences Library build a collection of books and journals. In 2000, with then Dean of Medicine, Prof Muiris Fitzgerald, he established a 6-8 week elective opportunity for four UCD School of Medicine students to attend the University of Kansas Medical School. This programme continues to this day and is much appreciated by our students.
We at the UCD School of Medicine are extremely proud that one of our alumni should have had such a distinguished career and that he be remembered for his commitment to the highest standards of clinical care and a dedication to research, enquiry and discovery.