Indian partnership reaches milestone

by Chuck Brown, UNMC public relations
October 08, 2012

The number of Indian physicians who have done observership rotations at UNMC through a partnership with the state of Andhra Pradesh in India recently topped 100.

Since the 2010 launch of the partnership — likely the only one in the U.S. that pairs an academic health science center with an entire state in India — between two and seven Indian physicians have been present for rotations at UNMC every month.


A group of physicians from Andhra Pradesh, India, recently visited with UNMC Chancellor Harold M. Maurer, M.D., in recognition of the success of a partnership between the medical center and the Indian state that has allowed 100 physicians to come to Omaha for observerships. Pictured from left are: Cindy Mitchell, Vasu Reddy Challa, M.B.B.S, M.S., Udaya Kiran Sirasati, M.B.B.S., Madhusudana Bommasandra Aswatha Reddy, M.B.B.S, M.S., Vanam Bharath, M.B.B.S., Dr. Maurer, Ward Chambers, M.D., Chandra Are, M.D., Sai Charan Kauthara, M.B.B.S., and Anusha Reddy Akepati, M.B.B.S. 
“That we’ve been able to bring 100 physicians here to UNMC from India for rotations in such a short span of time is a significant feat,” said Chandra Are, M.D., associate professor in surgical oncology and program director of general surgery residency and the lead architect of the partnership between UNMC and India. “It shows our commitment to global health and our partners in India.”
Facets of the partnership
The Indian physicians, who typically are fellows or recent medical school graduates, spend one to two months at UNMC where they observe the practices of physicians in various fields.
On the other side of the partnership, UNMC has sent two surgical residents to work as surgeons in Andhra Pradesh, a state in southeastern India that is home to nearly 80 million people and more than 35 medical schools.
Unmatched experience
The general surgery residents — Paul Kolkman, M.D., who went to India in 2009; and Filipe Sobral, M.D., who was there this year — worked as full-time trainee surgeons in Andhra Pradesh.
“The sheer volume of cases that these two encountered alone made this experience invaluable for them,” Dr. Are said. “And that doesn’t even touch on the invaluable knowledge and perspectives they gained as they were immersed in a different culture as people and as professionals.”
Just the beginning
The clinical rotations and experiences are just some of the benefits the partnership could have for UNMC, said Dr. Are, who envisions rotations for UNMC students, physicians from other specialties and innumerable opportunities for research collaboration.
“Our commitment to this partnership has built tremendous goodwill in India and we have positioned ourselves to do some truly special things through this partnership,” he said.
For more information
UNMC faculty members willing to host Indian physicians for observations and all those who want to know more about the medical center’s partnership with Andhra Pradesh should contact Dr. Are at


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