What is your professional background?
I graduated from medical school in India and moved to the US for further training. I completed internal medicine residency at Texas Tech, Nephrology fellowship at Ochsner Clinic and Transplant Nephrology fellowship at Emory University. I joined UMMC in 2016 as a transplant nephrologist.
Tell us about your work with renal transplantation at UMMC.
As the medical director for the kidney and pancreas transplant program, my job is to get patients with kidney failure on the transplant waitlist and make sure they stay healthy when called for a transplant. We work closely in a multidisciplinary team and care for all transplant recipients for the lifetime of the transplant/patient. Since we are the only transplant center in the state, our goal is to be available to everyone in the state. We go to outreach clinics in Biloxi and Grenada once per month to address the needs of patients in those areas as well.
UMMC performed 134 kidney transplants and six pancreas transplants last year and we are on track to match these numbers in 2019. We care for over a thousand kidney transplant recipients and about 700 patients are on the transplant waitlist as of today.
What advice would you give to someone pursuing medicine today?
The landscape of medical field is changing and change also brings new opportunities for innovation and growth. Keep yourself up to date and try to integrate technology with medical skills; that’s where the future lies. There are going to be tough days during medical school and training. It will all be worthwhile when you start experiencing the satisfaction of alleviating someone’s pain or caring for someone in their most vulnerable situation.
What do you like most about UMMC?
UMMC has been a family away from family to me. I love the southern hospitality, warm and welcoming people of the medical center and Mississippi. People here make us feel like home. UMMC allows me to care for the underserved and gives me a sense of purpose and professional satisfaction.
Tell us something about yourself that people may not know
I was good at math and always wanted to be an engineer. However, my father convinced me and helped me to find a different career path. I did not enjoy medical school for the first two years. My perspective changed after I started clinical rotations. Now I cannot imagine doing something else for a living, I absolutely love what I do and I am glad my father was able to convince me to pursue this career.