RICHMOND, Ind. – Annuradha Bhandari became the 42nd recipient of Reid Health’s Paul S. Rhoads Humanity in Medicine Award last week.
The Humanity in Medicine Award honors the memory of its first recipient, Paul S. Rhoades in 1983, for his service to patients and medicine. Rhoads was the founding director of Reid Health’s Department of Medical Education and helped organize the Wayne County Hospice Program and Adult Clinic for the indigent.
Bhandari’s selection was announced last week at an annual medical staff appreciation and reception of a new doctor, according to a press release.
“This award has been very difficult for me to digest. I find it hard to understand being rewarded for something that you love to do,” she said in the statement.
“It may seem like lip service, but I really feel like I’ve received so much more from this community than I could ever give back, so for me, there’s no pride, there’s gratitude. .”
Bhandari was born and raised in Toronto, Canada with a mother from the Fiji Islands and an Indian father. They taught her to live a life of service and spirituality, the value of hard work, and to invest herself fully in all that she does.
“I don’t feel the need to go to temple or church or a place of worship,” Bhandari said. “Every day this institution is my church and serving my patients is my way of praying. I am just grateful to be able to worship in this way.
“The values my parents passed on to me translated to the very core of why I love doing what I do, and I will be forever grateful to them for the way they raised me.”
Bhandari, who received her medical degree from the Medical University of the Americas in St. Kitts and Nevis in the West Indies, came to Reid in 2014 from Detroit Medical Center-Sinai Grace Hospital in Detroit, Michigan, where she was chief medical resident. .
Her husband’s father, Aman Bakshi, Surinder Bakshi, MD, anesthesiologist Reid recruited her. When Reid started a residency program, Bhandari was ready to move, building the program from the ground up.
“It was exciting to be able to help start a residency program from its inception and witness a monumental event in which a community hospital is no longer just a community hospital but a teaching hospital,” Bhandari said.
She was instrumental in establishing Reid’s Perioperative Clinic and, at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, a special respiratory clinic. While continuing her own primary care practice.
“As an innovator, as a leader, as a spokesperson for medical personnel, as a clinician and as a very talented person, she is someone who, in her own right, has established herself among the medical staff with credibility and continued to excel and seek ways in which she could leave her mark, and she did,” said Craig Kinyon, President and CEO of Reid Health.
Bhandari loves to teach and centers everything she does around her patients.
“She is the epitome of this award,” said Billie Kester, Reid Health vice president for continuum of care. “She has heart in everything she does, and she’s probably one of the most compassionate people I know, so the Humanity Award in Medicine couldn’t go to a better person.”
Reid Health’s Board of Directors has approved an investment of more than $100 million for a new state-of-the-art campus in Connersville.
Reid plans a two-story, 177,000 square foot facility with more than 400 parking spaces and a helipad at Kmart’s former site, 2500 Park Road. The building is expected to be completed in 2024.
“We want to continue adding services and technologies as the community needs them and healthcare evolves,” Kinyon said. “We will have space available in the new building to expand for things that we are not thinking about right now.
“It’s an exciting project for us because we can take a blank sheet of paper and start over.”
The new facility will not provide an inpatient hospital due to proximity to Reid Hospital in Richmond.
“We don’t provide inpatient care because we can transfer patients to Richmond in less than 30 minutes and have all the subspecialists and specialists there for their care,” Kinyon said. “Replicating this in Connersville would not be financially viable, and it is our responsibility to build a healthcare facility that can meet the needs of the community for years to come.”
The building will replace the current facility at 1941 Virginia Avenue, which was previously owned by the Fayette Regional Health System. Reid Health acquired a substantial portion of Fayette Regional’s assets in July 2019 after Fayette Regional filed for bankruptcy protection. Reid plans to demolish the Virginia Avenue building once the new facility is complete.
The grand opening of the new building will take place on October 19 and Reid invites the community to The Big Build Bash! from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. on October 22 at Roberts Park. The event will feature vendors, food trucks and a free concert at 5 p.m. The Kunkel Drive-in will host a cruise from noon to 3 p.m. at the restaurant.
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