(Chicago, IL: October 24th, 2020) (Chicago, IL: October 24th, 2020) “We are deeply saddened and disheartened at the passing away of Dr. Mukul Chandra, a cardiologist and network wellbeing advocate, died on Sunday, October 18th, because of harms brought about by COVID.” Dr. Sudhakar Jonnalagadda, President of American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) said here today. Dr.Chandra passed away peacefully at the Cleveland Clinic in the presence of his family on Sunday, October 18, 2020.
Dr. Chandra graduated from MS University in Baroda, India, and completed further trainings at SGPGI Lucknow, India; Hadassah University Hospital Ein Kerem – Jerusalem, Israel; and Emory University, Atlanta. He completed his cardiology fellowship at the University of Texas Medical Branch. Dr. Chandra served as Medical Director of Cardiac Preventive Care and Research at And was the Vice Chair of the Cardiovascular Service Line at Miami Valley Hospital. He also was an Assistant Clinical Professor at Wright State University. He was the recipient of the 2008 AHA Distinguished Achievement Award and the Health Care Hero and Innovator of the Year Award from the Dayton Business Journal.
Dr. Dr.Mukul S Chandra is yet another physician of Indian Origin who has succumbed to the deadly virus, after a long battle against COVID-19 and related complications. Dr. Chandra is survived by his wife Arti, son Shubham, and daughter Aayushi. “Thank you all from the bottom of our hearts for your tremendous support through last 7 months. Your support through calls, prayers and positive thoughts have provided great comfort to the family and friends through this difficult journey,” the family acknowledged in a report. The family reported that Dr. Chandra died on Sunday from lasting damages following a COVID-19 diagnosis earlier this year. “He was always thinking of the people of Dayton. Their love supported him and carried him, and all of us, through our hardest months,” Shubham said.
“Indian American Physicians are bearing the brunt of this pandemic in the US,” said Dr. Sajani Shah, Chair of AAPI BOT. “Not a day goes by without hearing about many of them getting infected with Coronavirus, and several of them fighting for their life, because of their disproportionate share of the population in the Healthcare field. This pandemic is hitting close to home for me and my colleagues,” Dr. Shah added.
Dr. Anupama Gotimukula, President-Elect of AAPI, pointed to the fact that “The deadly Corona virus has claimed over a million deaths around the world with the US leading the chart with nearly 212,000 deaths. The pandemic has placed the entire healthcare sector, and in particular the Indian American medical fraternity at the frontlines of the fight against the pandemic.”
Dr. Priya Khanna, 43, an Indian American nephrologist died in a New Jersey Hospital. Her father Satyendra Khanna (78), a general surgeon was another Indian American who has sacrificed his life while saving the lives of others. Dr. Ajay Lodha, past president of AAPI is battling for his life with complications from the virus.
“We have a proud moment, it is (also) a scary moment; it is a mixed feeling, but this virus is a deadly virus” Dr. Ravi Kolli, Vice President of AAPI, describing the situation under which the physicians of Indian Origin serving people infected with the virus. “They tend to work disproportionately in areas that are medically underserved like rural and inner city areas taking on a heavier workload with patients who are more ill. We are definitely in the frontline fighting this deadly battle,” against the coronavirus, Reddy said.
“Our Indian American Physicians are down in the trenches in the frontline bravely taking care of the sick,” Dr. Amit Chakrabarty, Secretary of AAPI pointed out. “Unfortunately, we have had multiple heart-bearing incidents about our physicians that have contracted the disease while performing their duties, several who are on ventilator and in critical condition and some who have succumbed to the disease. However, undaunted, they continue to perform their duties in this time of national crisis.”
Expressing hope, Dr. Satheesh Kathula, Treasurer of AAPI says, “AAPI members continue to donate money for AAPI to provide essential personal protective equipment to areas that are in short supply. Finally, AAPI has provided through various channels, spiritual and motivational guidance to our members and their families. We are in this together.”
There are about 80,000 practicing Indian American physicians who are at the forefront of fighting COVID-19 pandemic in the United States. In addition, there are around 40,000 medical students, residents, and fellows of Indian origin in this country who are supporting many of the hospitals affected by the pandemic.
As the family and friends continue to grieve the death of Dr. Mukul Chandra, we are hearing from one of his friends. In a statement, Premier Health said in part, “He was a prolific educator in our Dayton community, and served as a leading spokesperson for the local American Heart Association, always looking for ways to share information about heart health. We realize every day that COVID is so unpredictable, there isn’t an age demographic, there isn’t a race, there isn’t a social-economic status it affects.
The Chandra Family had released a statement earlier: “The Chandra family has been overwhelmed by the wonderful outreach from both those in the local community and those around the world who have rallied in their time of great need. They are extremely humbled and thankful for the tireless work of so many. We respectfully ask you refrain from contacting the family or caregivers directly. This will allow us to focus on providing our energy to support the recovery of Dr. Chandra. Thank you for your support, cooperation and understanding.”
The family says they are not accepting donations at this time, but they will be asking people to donate to a local organization in lieu of flowers. The wake and funeral services will be held on 10/24/2020, Saturday at 10:30am ET. Please find the zoom link below to join. Date and time: 10/24/2020, 10:30am – 12pm. Zoom link: https://relx.zoom.us/j/95199885485 If unable to login the above Zoom meeting, please watch the service below: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCX1rDhDYhGcYgblrvh3I8Gg Donations in lieu of flowers may be sent to Community Health Centers of Dayton, https://www.communityhealthdayton.org