“Staff” Barootes was born in Saskatoon on November 15, 1918. He obtained his BA from the University of Saskatchewan in 1940 and his MD from the University of Toronto in 1943, then served two years as medical officer with the Toronto Scottish regiment. Following specialty training in Toronto, he practised urology in Regina. After serving as a member of the Thompson committee in 1960-61, he became president of the Saskatchewan Medical Association in 1962, presiding over the twenty-three-day doctors' strike. Because of his financial expertise, he served six years as treasurer of the Canadian Medical Association (CMA), and one year as its deputy president, for which he received the Association's prestigious Medal of Service. Barootes was president of the Medical Council of Canada in 1972-73. He was appointed by Prime Minister Mulroney to the Canadian senate from 1984 to 1993. In an article written in 1991 he admitted that his early fears that doctors would be conscripted to civil service had been unfounded, since medicare had not destroyed the sacred doctor-patient relationship nor professional self-government. He recommended that health professions should be forbidden to strike by law, provided that binding arbitration be available instead. Barootes died on July 30, 2000.
C. Stuart Houston