November 14, 2003

VCH physician wins national community service award

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Kendal Broadie, Ph.D., evaluates mutant fruit flies under the microscope in his MRBIII laboratory. Dana Johnson

Dr. Venkatramanan Shankar, assistant professor in the division of Pediatric Critical Care and Anesthesia, received a prestigious community service award from the American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP).

Shankar participates in a project to help improve the health of people living in a rural tribal community in India.

His efforts include an annual trip to a remote area of India to join with other physicians to set up a makeshift hospital and provide care, especially to the pregnant women and children in that area. The group also trains women of the villages to become providers of basic health care.

Shankar’s project, titled “Jan Swasthya Sahyoug: People’s Health Support Group at Bilaspur, Chattisgarh, India: A Voluntary Community Health Project in Rural and Tribal India” was selected from among 126 international nominations.

Shankar received a cash prize to further his volunteer projects, which will go back into the project to help pay for things like medical supplies.

Shankar, along with 22 other physicians, received the award at a dinner hosted by the Chest Foundation at Universal Studios in Orlando, Fla.