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Jagat Prakash Nadda, India’s Minister For Health, Seeks To Work Collaboratively With AAPI In Enhancing Of Healthcare Delivery in India

Mumbai (Jan. 03, 2015): “You are leading luminaries, excelling in the medical field, contributing to make a positive impact in the healthcare sector through your dedication, commitment, knowledge and skills,” Hon’able Shri Jagat Prakash Nadda, India’s Minister For Health, told the hundreds of international delegates, who have come to participate in the 9th annual Global Healthcare Summit (GHS) 2015 on Friday, January 2nd, 2015 at the Trident Hotel, Narimen Point, Mumbai. Organized by the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) that serves as an umbrella organization for more than 160 member associations nationwide, GHS 2015 offers a platform to nearly 100,000 physicians of Indian origin it represents, to explore ways to giving back to their motherland.

“It is your love for your motherland that has brought you here today,” Nadda said as the audience cheered him loudly. “We are optimistic about making a positive change in the health scenario of India, where we are seeking to have a high quality, affordable healthcare to all of our citizens.”

Earlier, during the day, Devendra Fadnavis, the Hon’able Chief Minister of the state of Maharashtra, in his address to the international delegates, promised whole-hearted support to the initiatives of AAPI in the state of Maharashtra and help AAPI set up an Office in Mumbai.

In his introductory remarks, Dr. Ravi Jahagirdar, President of AAPI, reminded the Minister that the Global Healthcare Summit (GHS) has come to be recognized as been a very unique and a truly pioneering effort to address areas of concern which are of significant consequences on health care scenario in India. Past summits have identified areas of mutual interest and also integrated advancements of healthcare facilities in India besides ways and means of tackling long term concerns leading to long-term collaborations. Among the many initiatives, the 2015 Summit will help establish India-centric guidelines for management of Hepatitis C, Brain Injury and Trauma. He urged the Government of India to “support our initiatives and thus help us help the healthcare needs of our motherland, India.”

The nation's growing wealth has yet to find a panacea for India's overburdened public health care system. Acknowledging that there is a dichotomy in India, which is a huge challenge for the government and its more than a billion people, Nadda said that “even as we grow economically to be a powerful nation, healthcare is a huge challenge. There is an urgent need to enhance the healthcare delivery in India.”

Seeking collaboration and participation from AAPI in every possible area in the large healthcare sector in India. “You know the needs of the nation. Now, it’s your responsibility to see where your expertise and services will fit in and how you can make a positive impact in the healthcare system in India,” the Minister told the AAPI delegates.

During his nearly 30 minutes long address, Nadda presented an overview of the healthcare needs of the country and suggested four areas where AAPI could collaborate with the government of India: 1. In establishing Memorandum of Understanding with international organizations, which will support healthcare in India; 2. Transferring advanced research and experiences in the medical field and enhance the quality of medical education in India; 3. Organizing healthcare/medical camps in rural and economically backward regions of the nation; and 4. Addressing hygienic and preventive measures and enhancing the healthcare delivery in India.

The Minister proposed that each AAPI member return to one’s place of birth and  identify the local needs of the place and invest one’s time and resources and talents and skills there in order to make a positive impact on the health of your native place. “If AAPI has a project in its efforts to enhance the healthcare system in India, the Ministry of Health will collaborate and provide all possible support to it,” the Minister promised the AAPI delegates who had come from around the United States to participate in the 9th edition of the Global Healthcare Summit in Mumbai.

Every state in India is unique and there is diversity of health needs based on the regional makeup of the population, the Health Minister said. There is a lack of trained healthcare professionals, he said and added that India needs an additional 500,000 trained Physicians, 300,000 trained Nurses and many more para-medicals to serve the growing needs of the population. While has made progress in containing several communicable diseases, the Health Minister said, there is an ever increasing need to address the fast growing non-communicable diseases, including Diabetes, Trauma, stroke and Heart Attacks that kill hundreds of thousands of people annually.

During a Town Hall like meeting where AAPI delegates had an opportunity to express their concerns and offer comments and suggestions, they shared with the Minister their thoughts and insights into addressing several healthcare needs, delivery of healthcare system and how to prevent diseases. The Minister promised to follow them up and find ways to address them. Anwar Feroz, who had moderated the session urged AAPI delegates to convey their thoughts and suggestions to AAPI, which will coordinate individual member’s insights and comments and send them out collectively to the Ministry of Health in India.

Others who had addressed the event included Ms. Paula Wilson, CEO of Joint Commission Resources (JCR) and its international division, Joint Commission International (JCI) and Raju Purohit, a member of the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly.

Ayush Gupta won the first prize that carried a cash prize of Rs. 100,000 in the Research and Poster Contest for his works on “Immunotherapy for non-responders among patients of spinal tuberculosis.” Krutika Parasar won the 2nd place for her research on “Can sphno-palatine ganglion block be used instead of epidural blood patch following dural puncture to reduce maternal morbidity.” The 3rd place went to Devang Odedra for his work on “Effectiveness of a report selective laser trabculoplasty in glaucoma patients.” The consolation prize was given to Disha Sharma for her work on “Late onset hydrocephalus in children with tuberculosis meningitis.” Dr. Gopal Batra, who chaired the committee that chose the winners among the dozens of submissions from around the world, announced the winners and gave away the Certificates.

GHS 2015, a four-day event began on a Thursday, January 1st, 2015 with a welcome reception and a cultural Program showcasing the rich cultural traditions of the state of Maharashtra. A sumptuous dinner was preceded by a session on “Return to India – Investing, Real Estate, banking Seminar” by Dileep Choksi, CC of the Chokshi Advisors, Pvt. Ltd.

A mega entertainment show on Friday night by local artists took the AAPI delegates down the memorable and nostalgic moments of Bollywood world. The cultural event by talented artists displayed elegantly how the culture of the times shaped the ways in which the Bollywood world and its popular stars of each period embodied the essence of art and culture of their respective times in history.

“Our ability to share knowledge and influence the medical world has never been greater,” says Dr. Seema Jain, President of AAPI. “The advancement of modern technology, the quality of care we provide and the values that we support can reverberate around the world as never been before,” she said.

Accordingly, the day was packed with seminars, workshops and symposiums on modern research and topics. The scientific program of GHS 2015 is developed by leading experts with the contributions of a stellar Scientific Advisory Board and International Scientific Committee, said, Dr. Ajay Lodha, Vice President of AAPI.

Pre-conference web based sessions have been offered to over 50,000 physicians and for the very first time, there is a live streaming of sessions during GHS 15 which is being viewed live by physicians from around the world, added Dr. Gautam Samadder, Secretary of AAPI. The Conference in collaboration with over 10 professional associations from all over the world, accredited from Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education for 14 hours of credits will be applied for, said Dr. Naresh Parikh, Treasurer of AAPI. 

Several medical universities and schools in India are starting new curriculum - MD program in emergency medicine at the post graduate level to train physicians in this very important field. AAPI would help put together the best possible curriculum, Dr. Ajeet Singhvi, Chair of BOT, said.

“While these networks educate AAPI leadership and member physicians on cutting edge disease topics and cutting edge intervention, through this work during GHS 2015, AAPI is excited to showcase the full heights that Asian Indian physicians have reached, elevate educational quality, stimulate the AAPI general physician members, bring further recognition to these renowned physicians, and inspire our young physicians-in-training,” Dr. Jahagirdar explained. For additional information on AAPI and its Global Healthcare Summit, please visit: www.aapiusa.org; www.aapighsindia.org