Indian-American physicians raise more than $5 million worth aid for Covid relief in India

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The American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI), the largest ethnic medical organization in the USA representing the interest of more than 100,000 physicians in the country, announced Aug. 1, 2021, that it has raised more than $5 million for Covid relief efforts in India.

“The generosity of the members of AAPI and Indian community has been unprecedented,” Dr. Anupama Gotimukula, president of AAPI, is quoted saying in a press release. She thanked the donors and also the volunteers who have “spent hundreds of hours in coordinating and disbursing the vital medical supplies to the most needed hospitals across India.”

Dr. Kusum Punjabi, chair of AAPI Board of Trustees, an Emergency Department physician serving thousands of Covid patients in the New Jersey, thanked members and others for raising the amount over the last few months.

The immediate Past President of AAPI Dr. Sudhakar Jonnalagadda noted how a number of initiatives had been undertaken during his tenure which was why frontline healthcare professionals who devoted their lives and work serving humanity during the COVID-19 pandemic were acknowledged during the recent AAPI Convention.

“We have been working very diligently in sending oxygen concentrators and ventilators to India, to deal with the calamity in India and are in the process of helping to set up oxygen generator plants in different hospitals in India,” added, Dr. Ravi Kolli, president-Elect of AAPI.

Regional Director Dr. Sujeeth Punnam, one of the many AAPI leaders coordinating the efforts said, “Thus far, AAPI has provided 2300 Concentrators, 100 Ventilators and 100 High Flow Nasal Canula Machines To 45 Hospitals In India as part of the Covid Pandemic Relief Efforts.”

Other executives of AAPI who commented on the latest effort and future activities including Dr. Anjana Samadder, vice-president of AAPI, Dr. Satheesh Kathula, secretary of AAPI, and Dr. Krishan Kumar, treasurer.

“We are discussing about coordinating efforts to make available the much needed vaccines in the Slum areas in Delhi And Hyderabad where compliance is very low and apart from life saving equipment for severe Covid patients management in ICUs,” said Dr. Anil Tibrewal, who has been in the forefront leading AAPI’s efforts to help India during the crisis.

As AAPI cannot direct its resources to specific areas and relies on government of India to distribute its supplies, Dr. Amit Chakrabarty, past secretary of AAPI and several other AAPI leaders have been working outside of the umbrella of AAPI for direct transfer of the essential material, focusing mainly on the peripheral hospitals which do not get aid readily, the press release said.

Among these groups is HELP INDIA BREATHE, a part of ApShiNi ventures’ endeavor by a group of Doctors helping individuals donate Oxygen related supplies to India during this unprecedented calamity.

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