Dr. R.D. Prabhu Instrumental in Lobbying for AAPI on Capitol Hill
As a Chair of the AAPI’s (American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin) Legislative Committee, Dr. R. D. Prabhu successfully arranged a well-attended meeting with US Senators and Congressman in Washington DC.
Over 40 elected members of the Congress, including Nevada Sen. Reid, Congressman Heck, Congresswoman Titus and Congressman Horsford, attended the gathering of over 150 AAPI member Physicians at the Legislative Day on the Capitol Hill.
Las Vegan Dr.Rachakonda Prabhu, AAPI’s Legislative Committee Chair, welcomed the delegates to the AAPI Legislative Day. While pointing out that in the 112th Congress, AAPI had helped secure the introduction of the “Doctors for Underserved Areas in America Act,” (H.R. 2805), by U.S. Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), which would make the J-1 Visa Waiver Program permanent, enabling international medical graduates the opportunity to perform their medical training and residency in the United States, Dr. Prabhu urged the members of the Congress to cosponsor legislation making the J-1 Visa Waiver Program permanent when it is reintroduced in the House and to cosponsor S. 616.
Senator Harry Reid (D-NV), US Senate Majority Leader, had all praises for the physicians of Indian origin who have come to serve and dedicate their lives, skills and talents at the service of the needy in this country. “You excel in your fields and have a passion to provide quality care,” Reid told the cheering AAPI members, who had gathered at the Mansfield Room on Senate side of the Capitol Building, which is normally used for the Senators to meet for their weekly luncheon. Other U.S. Senators who had addressed the gathering of Indian physicians included Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD), Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), and Sen. Mark Pryor (D-AR).
In his remarks, Congressman Phil Gingrey, MD (R-GA), said, “My 95 yr-old-mom, my wife and children are being treated by physicians of Indian origin. You do a great job.” Congressman Jim McDermott, MD (D-WA), who has visited India more than any other member of Congress and is a past co-chair of the Congressional Caucus on India and Indian Americans, pledged to take the concerns of AAPI members in the US Congress.
The culmination of the daylong event was a reception/dinner hosted by India’s Ambassador to the United States, Nirupama Rao at the Indian Embassy in the nation’s capital to the AAPI delegates, who had come from across the country.