Atlanta gala puts the spotlight on maternal and neo-natal health in India

The American Bazaar, April 5th, 2017

Event honors prominent Indian American physicians Dr. Jay Yadav and Dr. Pradeep Sinha.

JOHNS CREEK, GA: The American India Foundation honored two prominent figures from the local Indian American community at its third annual gala held here at the Atlanta Athletic Club on April 1. Physician and entrepreneur Dr. Jay Yadav and Dr. Pradeep Sinha were honored for their contributions to the medical field and the community.

Dr. Jay Yadav receiving the AIF Philanthropy Award from Jagdish Sheth.

Dr. Yadav, a serial entrepreneur, is the CEO of MiRus, an Atlanta-based medical device company that designs surgical products for the treatment of spinal and orthopedic degeneration and deformities.

The Cincinnati, Ohio-born Dr. Sinha is specialized in otolaryngology and facial plastic and reconstructive surgery.

It was fitting that two physicians were recognized at the gala, the main goal of which was to raise funds for the AIF’s Maternal and Newborn Survival Initiative, better known as MANSI, and whose main message was that simple and thoughtful community-based interventions can address critical public health issues that can save the lives of mothers and newborns.

More than 200 people attended the event, among them some of the best-known names from the area’s Indian American community, including well-known management guru Dr. Jag Sheth and Dr. Vikas Kapil, Associate Director for Science and Chief Medical Officer at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Global Health Leadership center. The latter was also one of the two keynote speakers.

Honoree Dr. Pradeep Sinha addresses the audience.

Delivering the first keynote, Dr. Jeffrey Koplan, a former head of CDC, emphasized the need for a collaborative approach to tackling global health challenges. “The world is much smaller than event 50 years ago,” he said. “In 1850, there were 300 million people in the world… Today there are 7 billion… In 1850, it took around almost a year to get around the world. Today, you can do it well within 48 hours.”

Dr. Koplan said what the massive increase in population and the tremendous connectivity means is diseases can spread at breakneck speed from one corner of the globe to another.

“Your work is extremely valuable, extremely appreciated,” he said, referring to AIF’s work in the area of public health.

Ambassador Charles Shapiro being recognized by Harsha Agadi.

Dr. Kapil, the second keynote speaker, said although the world has made significant progress in combating diseases such as polio, “there is much, much more work needs to be done… Yes, we are making great progress in public health, in global health, in public health in India. But we have a long way to go.”

Highlighting various CDC and partner organizations are involved in India, he praised the way in which the AIF is approaching some of the public health issues. “The AIF is approaching some very basic health issues in the most strategic and impactful manner, something that CDC tries to do around the world.”

Sheth, the Charles H. Kellstadt Professor of Marketing at Emory University, who is on the Leadership Group of AIF’s Atlanta Chapter, introduced Dr. Yadav. The management guru underscored the importance of entrepreneurship and commended the contribution of the Indian-born physician through his entrepreneurial journey.

In his address, Dr. Sinha, the second honoree, praised the AIF’s work. “Some of the basic aspects of care related to the newborns that are considered routine are missing in the rural pockets of India,” he said. “The AIF is filling that gap through its public health program focused on mothers and newborns.”

Dr. Amitabh Sharma speaking at the gala.

AIF Atlanta Chapter Chair Dr. Amitabh Sharma, Chair, who anchored the program, highlighted the achievements of organization. AIF CEO Alex Counts spoke about the vision of the organization to impact five million underserved people by 2018.

Venky Raghavendra, Senior Director of AIF, elaborated on the MANSI program sharing how community-centric solutions are being brought to the doorstep of the needy using existing resources in the community.

Other prominent attendees included Dr. Rafi Ahmed of the Emory Vaccine Center, Harsha Agadi of Crawford LLC and Charles Shapiro, president of the World Affairs Council of Atlanta and former U.S. Ambassador to Venezuela.

Read the full article here.

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