The American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin Nov. 4 announced it has launched a Veterans Obesity Awareness Campaign during a ceremony at the Indian Consulate in New York.
AAPI president Dr. Gautam Samadder said that the association joined a team from Veterans Affairs in its mission to improve the health and healthcare of overweight and obese veterans along with other organizations, including the WHEELS Global Foundation, Global Association of Physicians of Indian Origin and the Veterans of Foreign Wars and Move! Weight Management Program.
Leaders representing each of these groups pledged to work together in the campaign supporting at least one hundred VA facilities throughout the continental United States, AAPI said in a news release.
Towards this end, AAPI has formed an ad hoc committee to oversee its functions, comprising of Samadder, Dr. Vikas Kuarna, Dr. Uma Koduri and Dr. Satheesh Kathula.
“Coming from a nation that has given much to the world, today physicians of Indian origin have become a powerful influence in medicine across the world. Nowhere is their authority more keenly felt than in the United States, where Indians make up the largest non-Caucasian segment of the American medical community,” Samadder said. “The overrepresentation of Indians in the field of medicine is striking – in practical terms, one out of seven doctors in the United States is of Indian heritage. We provide medical care to over 40 million of U.S. population, caring for one in every seven patients in the nation. There are 150 AAPI chapters across the nation and it has an ever growing membership of Indian American Physicians,” he reported.
Providing a brief background to the launch and initiative of the obesity awareness program for the veterans, Samadder referenced AAPI’s successful Childhood Obesity Awareness Campaign with a goal to help fight the childhood obesity problem by providing education to the students and their parents.
Starting with the pilot program in 2013, AAPI adopted close to 80 schools across the United States where they are promoting “Wear Yellow” for obesity and childhood obesity awareness, 5-2-1-0 and Choose My Plate concept with the tag line of “Be Fit. Be Cool.”
This success story inspired AAPI to take on this major challenge among veterans today, Samadder declared.