AASAN Annual Meeting Minutes. 8 -10 AM PT. October 17, 2020 (Online Meeting)

Meeting theme: Leading effective and diverse teams

8:00-8:10     Welcome remarks:  Dr. Harminder Singh

  • AASAN Executive Committee, New Officer Introductions
      • President: Dr. Beejal Amin
      • Vice-President: Dr. Anand Veeravagu
      • Secretary: Dr. Sameer Sheth
      • Treasurer: Dr. Cheerag Upadhyaya
      • Member-At-Large: Dr. Bharat Guthikonda, Dr. Atman Desai, Dr. Faiz Ahmad, Dr. Aditya Pandey, Dr. Nitin Tandon

8:10-8:30      How Spirituality Informs Leadership and Service in Neurosurgery

  • Laligam Sekhar. Professor and Vice Chairman of Neurosurgery, University of Washington, Seattle, WA.

8:30-8:50      Panel Discussion: Leadership in Organized Neurosurgery in US and India

Moderator: Dr. Anand Veeravagu. Assistant Professor of Neurological Surgery. Stanford University, CA.


                       Dr. Ashwini Sharan. Professor and Program Director of Neurosurgery, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital. Philadelphia, PA. Past-President: Congress of Neurological Surgeons (CNS).

Dr. Praveen Mummaneni. Professor and Vice-Chairman of Neurosurgery, UCSF. Past-President: California Association of Neurological Surgeons (CANS). Vice-President CNS.

                        Dr. Atul Goel. Professor and Chair of Neurosurgery. King Edward Memorial Hospital. Mumbai. Past-President: Neurological Society of India (NSI).

                        Dr. VP Singh. Chairman – Institute of Neurosciences. Medanta. New Delhi. President-Elect: Neurological Society of India (NSI).

8:50-8:55         Introduction of Keynote Speaker: Prof. Melvyn Menezes

8:55-9:30         Keynote Address: Leading Effective and Diverse Teams

  • Melvyn Menezes. Former Faculty: Harvard Business School. Associate Professor of Marketing: Boston University Questrom School of Business.

9:30-10:00       Panel Discussion: Becoming a Chairperson – Tips, Timing and Temperament

Moderator: Dr. Sameer Sheth. Associate Professor, Dept. of Neurosurgery, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX.


                       Dr. Raj Narayan. Professor and Chairman, Department of Neurosurgery and Director, Northwell Institute of Neurology and Neurosurgery, Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell.

Dr. Shekar Kurpad. Professor and Chairman, Department of Neurological Surgery. Medical Director – Neuroscience Service Line, Froedtert Health and The Medical College of Wisconsin.

                        Dr. Ketan Bulsara. Professor and Chief, Division of Neurosurgery. Program Director, Neurosurgery Residency. University of Connecticut.

                        Dr. Bharat Guthikonda. Professor and Chairman, Department of Neurosurgery. Louisiana State University, Shreveport, Louisiana.

10:00 AM        Adjourn

Meeting Sponsor:  OM Surgical Solutions


AASAN Meeting Minutes /October 21, 2019, San Francisco, CA


Attendance: Harman Singh, Anand Veeravagu, Visish Srinivasan, Jacob Cherian, Aditya Vedantam, Cheerag Upadhyaya, Atul Goel, Jogi Pattisapu, Sneha Sharma, VP Singh, Laligam Shekhar, Ramesh Mishra, Nupur Pruthi, Caddum Reddy, Sameer Sheth, Akash Patel, Vikas Rao, Karthik Madhavan, Anil Mahavadi, Carter Lonsberry, Rabia Qaiser, Bharat Guthikonda, Kartik Kesavabhutla
Call to order: Dr. Harman Singh, President AASAN

• AASAN Exec Committee – Secretary
o Dr. Vikram Prabhu stepping down as secretary due to family obligations. Many thanks for his service to AASAN
o Interim Secretary duties to be assumed by Dr. Anand Veeravagu

• Membership Fees/Website
o Instituted annual membership dues of $300, thank you to those who have contributed

• AASAN-CNS International Clinical Experience (ICE)
o Finalizing programs/locations In India where our residents can do 4 week observer-ships. Will be a joint program with CNS.
o HS and AV working on proposal in communication with CNS

• 2019 AASAN Ambassadorship Winners
o Dr. Jagathlal Gangadharan – Ali Rezai (Sponsored by PMT Corporation)
o Dr. Dattaraj Sawarkar – Praveen Mummaneni (Sponsored by Om Surgical Solutions)

• 2019 AASAN Scholarship Winners
o Dr. Visish Srinivasan – Baylor
o Dr. Arjun Pendharkar – Stanford
o Dr. Pendharkar’s scholarship (3K) is sponsored by Dr. Bharat Guthikonda, LSU

• India Head Injury Initiative Update
o Dr. Jogi Pattisapu – Project is progressing well is Visakhapatnam. AASAN is fundraising to sponsor a second round of data collection and analysis.
o Om Surgical Solutions announced $3500 gift to go towards Head Injury Project.

• Committee Reports
o Fundraising (Dr. Aditya Pandey, Dr. Nitin Tandon)
o Membership (Dr. Faiz Ahmed, Dr. Cheerag Upadhyaya)
o Education (Dr. Anand Veeravagu, Dr. Sameer Sheth)
o Treasurer Report – Beejal Amin

• Round table dinner introductions

• Congratulations to Dr. Bharat Guthikonda on his Chairmanship position at LSU.

• Dinner Sponsor – Icotec Medical. Carbon Fiber Spinal Instrumentation – presentation by Maziyar Kalani, MD, Mayo Clinic

• Special thank you to corporate sponsors – Om Surgical Solutions, DocsDial, PMT Corp, Icotec

• Adjournment – 10 PM
Minutes prepared by Dr. Anand Veeravagu, Interim Secretary, AASAN.


AASAN Meeting Minutes / April 14, 2019, San Diego, CA


Attendance: Harminder Singh, Vikram Prabhu, Aditya Pandey, Cheerag Upadhyaya, Rose Moore (CTL), Daniel Cho(CTL), Sneha Chitra,  Sameer Sheth, Saraj Kumar Singh, Matthew Abraham, Suresh Nair, Anil Mahavadi, Rajan Patel, Aditya Srivatsan, Aniruddh Kumar Purohit, Jogi Pattisapu, Nitin Tandon, Ganesh Rao, Karthik Mahadevan, Praveen Mummaneni, Malla Bhaskara Rao, Shekar Kurpad, Ashwini Sharan, Visish Srinivasan

  1. Meeting opened by Dr. Harman Singh at ~8.40 pm.
  1. Dinner sponsored by CTL Amedica / Daniel Chon, President & CEO. This was acknowledged by Dr. Singh.
  1. Discussion regarding AASAN Board of Directors; bylaws allow for 3-10 directors for 3-year term in an advisory role; executive council of meeting proposed a slate that has been unanimously approved. The individuals have been contacted and have agreed to be on the board. The emphasis is to include individuals who are in private practice on the board so the meeting is representative of all. The motion to approve the slate was passed.

AASAN Board of Directors – 2019-2020

 Laligam Sekhar

Raj Narayan

Jogi Pattisapu

Ashwini Sharan

Shekar Kurpad

Ketan Bulsara

Praveen Mummaneni

  1. Membership fees proposed; $300 / year for all members; Additional amounts can be donated as desired by any individual and all amounts are tax deductible. Proposal is for free membership and attendance for residents and medical students. Only paying members will have voting rights. Members are allowed to host an ambassador. The option of lifetime membership payments may also be considered. Membership fees are required from Executive Council and Board members, as well as anyone hosting an AASAN Ambassador.
  1. AASAN bylaws being reviewed. The goal is to make AASAN more collaborative with organizations in India. Organizing 2-3 webinars / year would allow this partnership to develop. Dr. Rao and the CNS are interested in international partnerships as well. AIIMS/NIMHANS/JIPMER are some examples of institutions that would be good partners in this venture. Dr. Singh and Dr. Prabhu will work on the bylaws and generate a vision for the organization going forward.
  1. Fundraising Committee Report: Dr. Aditya Pandey / Dr. Nitin Tandon spoke about cerebrovascular initiatives and the option of partnerships with institutions in India and helping them set up stroke centers or other similar specialized centers. Allowing Industry to sponsor these visiting fellows to gather experience. There has also been success in functional neurosurgery (PMT/Stryker/Medtronic). The goal is 5-6 ambassadors coming to the US each year. There is no formal listing of fellowships/mentors listed on the website and that could be developed further.

Sponsor for the dinner in San Francisco in October is Eliiquence.

  1. Membership Committee Report: Last membership survey was done many years ago and it was an informal process of simply reaching out to residents of south Asian origin. Dr. Upadhyaya and Dr. Ahmed are working on this. The website platform is being updated and will allow individual login and payment of membership dues.
  1. Education Committee Report: Dr. Sheth and Dr. Veeravagu and Dr. Amin oversee evaluating and scoring applications for the various programs. Last years ambassador will present a talk this year. The goal is to match applicants to the best mentors based on their sub specialty interests. The process is based on merit rather than need. The plan is to increase the amount of money available to continue these sponsorships. There are a great number of qualified applications.
  1. NSICON Meeting December 5-8, 2019 in Mumbai / NSSICON February 27-29, 2020, Kolkata. Dr. Nair invited all the attendees to the NSICON meeting in Mumbai.
  1. Dr. Sneha Chitra Balasubramanium from Madras Medical College is the recipient of the 2019 Ambassador award. Her mentor is Dr. Laligam Sekhar. She thanked AASAN for the sponsorship and the impact it has had on her career. She discussed the impact of observing complex skull base and cerebrovascular surgery with Dr. Sekhar and plans to incorporate this into her practice. She also learned about other surgical adjuncts such as intraoperative monitoring, angiography and interventional modalities. She has also learned a great deal about editing surgical videos and is involved in numerous manuscripts. She discussed the evolution of subspecialty practice in India and how she will emphasize this when she returns to India. She shared 2 videos of Dr. Sekhar’s surgeries; resection of cavernous sinus tumor and vascular bypass surgery. She talked about her future plans and how this experience has influenced her own practice. She extended her thanks to AASAN and Dr. Sekhar.


  1. Head Injury initiative: Dr. Pattisapu gave an update about the head injury initiative in India, which AASAN has been a part of for several years. AASAN recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with King George Hospital – Neurosurgery Department in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh to initiate a Pilot Project to implement the guidelines approach for moderate to severe TBI. Using proper data collection, AASAN is helping verify guideline implementation and identifying gaps or delay in care delivery.


  1. Presentation from sponsors CTL Amedica. http://www.ctlamedica.com/


Other corporate sponsors were acknowledged: Om Surgical Solutions, PMT Corporation, DocsDial


  1. Meeting was adjourned at 10 PM.


Minutes prepared by Dr. Vikram Prabhu. Secretary. AASAN.


AASAN Meeting Minutes / October 2, 2018, Houston, TX

  1. Location: Irma’s Southwest Grill / Dinner sponsored by MiRus
  2. Excellent attendance; recorded by Dr. Veeravagu:
    Mummaneni Praveen
    Veeravagu Anand
    Kurpad Shekar
    Bulsara Ketan
    Asthagiri Ashok
    Amin Beejal
    James Shomit
    Pendharkar Arjun
    Singh Harman
    Sundararajan P
    Pruthi Nupur
    Banerji Deepu
    Mishra RC
    Nair Suresh
    Sekhar Laligam
    Prabhu Vikram
    Sundrani Shanker
    Varghese Vineesh
    Seerangan Palanisamy
    Bhaskara Rao Malla
    Pattisapu Jogi
    Krishmamurthy Satish
    Upadhyaya Cheerag
    Pandey Aditya
    Yadav Jay
    Krishnan Mahesh
    Mahavadi Anil
    Tandon Nitin
  1. Mummaneni opened the meeting and acknowledged Dr. Singh’s contributions as secretary. He proposed nominations for Executive Committee Positions:Dr. Singh as President, Dr. Prabhu as secretary. Both nominations were proposed by Dr. Mummaneni / Dr. Kurpad and seconded by Dr. Sekhar and approved by entire group.
  2. Veeravagu discussed AASAN ambassadorship applicants, committee structure (Dr. Amin, Dr. Veeravagu, Dr. Singh) and winner.
  3. Mummaneni acknowledged Dr. Sanjiv Bhatia who unexpectedly expired on 5/24/18. Dr. Singh acknowledged Dr. Bhatia’s contributions as mentor to Dr. Sonal Jain. Dr. Pattisapu spoke as a fellow pediatric neurosurgeon and acknowledged Dr. Bhatia’s contributions to Pediatric Neurosurgery and international health care. A Pediatric neurosurgery scholarship has been named in his honor. Dr. Tandon spoke of his time at AIIMS and how he met and was inspired by Dr. Bhatia.
  4. Pattisapu provided an update on the head injury initiative in India. He acknowledged the contribution of all neurosurgeons involved (US & India). He discussed the high incidence of head injury in India. Head injury guidelines have been formulated and initiated in India at five sites. Data gathering is in process for approximately 1547 patients. AASAN has contributed $10,000 to study the data that has been analyzed and is being submitted for publication. Overall, “low hanging fruit” is being targeted, the process is doing well, and a report is forthcoming to the AASAN leadership
  5. Amin’s provided the Treasurer’s report: He has served in this role for the past 5 years. The AASAN treasury is not as financially strong as 2 years ago; causes could include loss of industry sponsorship and less support from AASAN members to support the ambassador and scholars programs and initiatives in India. Currently the treasury balance stands at $58,000 (down from ~$100,000 5 years ago). He discussed the ease and ability to donate on the AASAN website.
  6. Mummaneni discussed the Ambassadorship program in which a resident or faculty from India is allowed to come to the US for a month to work with an AASAN mentor. They are provided between $5000-7000 for their expenses and a full report is expected of all money spent along with receipts. The scholars program allows US residents to travel to India for the NSI meeting and that is sponsored by AASAN with an amount of $5000. Overall, both program incur expenses of ~$10,000 per year. Both the Ambassador and Scholar are expected to present their work and experiences at the AASAN dinner at one of the annual meetings. The goal is to allow all the senior members of AASAN to host visitors.
  7. Mummaneni stated that to honor Dr. Sharan, the funds raised at the AASAN dinner tonight will be donated to CNS to form CNS Ashwini Sharan Award and the CNS will be asked to match the amount to bring residents back and forth from India. A followup message to the CNS leadership was sent and they expressed their appreciation.
  8. The online donation process was explained and demonstrated. Dr. Amin has collected the following to date since the meeting:
Praveen Mummaneni       1000
Harman Singh                    1000
Vikram Prabhu                  1000
Aditya Pandey                    1000
Shekar Kurpad                   1000
Shomit James                      1000
Jogi Pattisapu                     1121.01
Ketan Bulsara                     500
Laligam Sekhar                 1000
Nitin Tandon                       1000
Beejal Amin                         1000
TOTAL:                               $10,621.01
  1. Nominations for Members-at-large: Dr. Veeravagu, Dr. Upadhyaya, Dr. Tandon, Dr. Sameer Sheth. It is also open to others who are interested in participating and helping with visiting students. The motion was proposed by Dr. Kurpad and seconded by Dr. Singh and entire attendance.
  2. Singh stated that he would like to increase the Ambassadorship funding to $7000 and reduce the scholar award to $3000. He wanted to encourage residents to submit abstracts to NSI in Jaipur. The new education committee will be taking over the selection process following this meeting.
  3. Industry sponsorship was also encouraged to support the organization and these programs.
  4. Sharan spoke as the honored guest. He stated he was very proud and appreciative of the AASAN member contributions. He discussed his rise through AASAN into CNS leadership and the benefit of collaborative meetings with the CNS and NSI.
  5. Sekhar spoke as an academic neurosurgeon and his pride that Dr. Sharan is CNS president.
  6. The MiRus sponsorship was acknowledged by Dr. Singh.
  7. President Jay Yadav of MiRus spoke and offered to sponsor the AASAN ambassadorship and scholars program. He discussed the innovations at MiRus which refers to alloys they are developing. They have presented their work at NASS and other meetings. The company is ~2 years old and has won 2 spine tech awards at NASS for implants and navigation system. The tremendous pace of innovation / patents was discussed. He spoke about spine implant innovations and corporate strategy and product timeline from MiRus. He explained the history of MiRus. He also offered to help with sponsorship from Penumbra.
  8. Mahesh talked about MiRus’ work in helping the Indian community and workers obtain H1-B visas and other avenues of sponsorship for persons to obtain green cards. MiRus is one of high-tech approved programs of the US government. He encouraged AASAN members to engage with MiRus in this capacity.
  9. Mummaneni closed the meeting thanking everyone for attendance and MiRus for sponsorship.


Respectfully submitted,

Vikram C. Prabhu, MD


AASAN MEETING MINUTES: October 8th, 2017. Boston, MA.


Attendees: Praveen Mummaneni, Harman Singh, Ashwini Sharan, Bharat Guthikonda, Michael Virk, Jogi Pattisapu, Dilip Kiyawat, Sushil D, Virat Kumar Vasani, Prakash Modha, Shekar Kurpad, Yogesh Gandhi, Sameer Sheth, Rajakumar Deshpande, VP Singh, RC Mishra, CE Deopujari, Malla Bhaskara Rao, Paresh Doshi, Sonal Jain, Shrikanth Atluri, Koural Prasad, Kiran M, Sudhir Dube, Jay Kumar, Pranav Nanda, Laligam Sekhar, Murali Guthikonda, Natarajan M Chennai, Beejal Amin, Gurpreet Gandhoke, Rishi Wadhwa, Cheerag Upadhyaya, Gaurav Jain, Ajit Jada, Namanth Hussain, Karthik Madhavan, Pravin Salunke, Ram Sahu, Hitesh Kumar, Praveen Deshmukh, Faiz Ahmad, Shaswat Mishra


Meeting was called to order by AASAN President, Dr. Praveen Mummaneni at 8PM at Kashmir, Newbury Street, Boston.

Dr. Ashwini Sharan, current CNS President, and past president of AASAN, was felicitated for his contributions to AASAN.  He was presented with an award plaque commemorating his service to AASAN over the years. Dr. Mummaneni, Dr. Kurpad and Dr. Bulsara also made speeches in his honor, as well as pointing out the increasing crossover of AASAN officers in prominent roles in the CNS and AANS.

Change of meeting time from Monday evening to Sunday evening during CNS was very successful, and will be continued in the future.

AASAN Ambassadorship award for 2017-18 was presented to Dr. Sonal Jain Atluri, from Seth Gordhandas Sunderdas Medical College and King Edward VII Memorial Hospital in India.  She will be spending time with Dr. Sanjeev Bhatia at the University of Miami, in the pediatric division.

AASAN Scholarship award for 2017-18 was presented to Dr. Gurpreet Gandhoke.  He will be presenting at the NSI meeting on the following topic: “Incidence of position related upper extremity neuropraxia in 4313 consecutive patients undergoing spine surgery: Role of SSEP monitoring”

The AASAN educational fund was announced by Dr. Beejal Amin.  Donations to this fund can be made directly on the AASAN website, and will be used to fund AASAN’s Scholarship and Ambassadorship initiatives.  All donations are tax deductable.

Joint AANS-NSI meeting will be in Jaipur next year, December 2018 in collaboration from AASAN.  Everyone is encouraged to attend to make this meeting a success. Dr. Atul Goel is the President elect of NSI and will be heading this meeting.

Update was provided on the AASAN head injury initiative in India by Dr. Pattisapu.  India specific head-injury guidelines were released last year in India.  New pilot programs are being formed to implement the guidelines and assess impact.

Meeting was adjourned at 10 PM.


AASAN MEETING MINUTES:   September 26, 2016.  San Diego, CA. 

6 PM- 7:30 PM

Attendees:  Ketan Bulsara, Harman Singh, Karthik Madhavan, Ashok Asthagiri, Michael Virk, Ajit Jada, Neena Marupudi, Manmohan Singh, Vivek Tandon, Omar Choudhri, Gurpreet Gandhoke, Sameer Sheth, Aditya Pandey, Arivazhagan A, Nitin Tandon, Praveen Mummaneni, RC Mishra, Avinash haridas, Aniruddha TJ, Krishna C Joshi, K Narasingh Rao, Sameer Paltewar, Shyam Babhulkar, Vasant Dakwale, Pratik Dakwale


The meeting was called to order at Royal India restaurant.

– Ketan Bulsara welcomed everyone.  He congratulated Ashwini Sharan on becoming President of the CNS.  Ketan also announced that he will be stepping down as President of AASAN as his 2 year term has ended.  Praveen Mummaneni was welcomed as the next president of the organization.  His candidacy was unanimously accepted.  Ketan also announced that in order to maintain institutional memory, there will be a staggered change in AASAN leadership. Harman Singh and Beejal Amin will continue on as Secretary and Treasurer respectively.

– Praveen Mummaneni thanked Ketan for his service to AASAN as President for the past two years.  Praveen laid out his vision for the organization.  We will be reevaluating the Mission Statement for AASAN over the next several months.  A few different versions were proposed. This will be send to the membership for discussion.

– Vikram Prabhu has done a great job heading the Ambassadorship and Scholarship committees over the last several years. He has also been instrumental in finding industry funding to sponsor these educational endeavors. He will be limiting his involvement for family reasons.  A new candidate will be identified to fill his position. Vikram will bring the new appointee up-to-speed regarding his/her role.

– Ashok Asthagiri proposed inviting a CNS executive board member to the AASAN meetings, who can then serve as an unofficial “liaison” between the two organizations.

– Manmohan Singh from AIIMS informed the membership that if any of our residents (US, Canada) want to spend some time at AIIMS observing in the Neurosurgery/Neurology department, he is willing to facilitate the exchange.

– RC Mishra, the President of NSI, welcomed everyone to attend the NSI annual meeting in Chennai, December 15-18

–  The Ambassadorship and Scholarship recipients for this year are as follows:

Krishna Chaitanya Joshi, Ms Ramaiah Medical College, Bangalore, India – With Robert Spetzler, Barrow Neurological Institute, and Ketan Bulsara, Yale University.

Michael Virk, MD. Department of Neurological Surgery, UCSF. AASAN award presentation at NSI Meeting in Chennai.



5:30 PM- 7PM

Attendees:  Ashwini Sharan, Shekar Kurpad, Vikram Prabhu, Ketan Bulsara, V Srinivasan, Bharat Guthikonda, Yogesh Gandhi, Rajiv Midha, Shyam Duvuru, R Saranyam, Arvina Ahuja, Tanmoy Maiti, Shyamal Bir, Nitin Tandon, Nrupen, Baxi, Omar Choudhri, Laligam Shekar, Harley Brito da Silva, Raj Narayan, Basant Mishra

The meeting was called to order at India House.
-Ketan Bulsara welcomed everyone.  As first order of business, we congratulated Ash Sharan for becoming President-Elect of the CNS.  This is quite an accomplishment for both him and our organization.
-Jogi Patissapu was unable to attend this year’s meeting, however, wanted to pass along that the Head Injury work that AASAN has supported is progressing well.  Dr. Narayan discussed this further.  There was some discussion regarding providing financial support for neurosurgeons in India who are helping with the implementation of these guidelines.  Dr. Narayan suggested financial support of up to $5000.  Dr. Sekhar discussed that we have supported these initiative, however, for them to be sustainable long-term, it is imperative that they have financial independence.  We can help facilitate with fund raising that they would initiate as opposed to providing the financial support through AASAN.  Dr. Basant Misra proposed that if we provide financial support, it should be in the form of reimbursement as opposed to giving a monetary sum upfront.
This will be discussed further within the executive board and if necessary will be voted on by the board.
-Ketan Bulsara term of chair AASAN is ending.  He proposed that to maintain institutional memory, the officer positions not all rotate at once.  We will rotate the chair this year and then plan for rotation of the treasurer and secretary in a staggered fashion.   A preliminary slate will be discussed by the executive board and sent to the membership for confirmation.
-Vik Prabhu updated us on the Ambassador program.  The timeframe and guidelines for application will be added to the website.  He will coordinate this with Harman Singh.


AASAN MEETING MINUTES: May 4, 2015.  Washington, DC.

5:30 PM- 7 PM

Attendees:  Ketan Bulsara, Harman Singh, Atul Goel, Namath Hussain, Laligam Sekhar, Vedantum Rajshekhar, Jogi Pattisapu, Gaurav Gupta, Jay Vachhani, Murali Guthikonda, Shekar Kurpad, Raj Murali, Anil Nanda, Sujit Prabhu, Dwarakanath Srinivas, Tanmoy Kumar Maiti, Uzma Samadani, Anwar Feroz, Malla Bhaskar Rao, Ashwini Sharan, Raj Narayan, G Naresthura, Aminul Ahmed, Neena Marupudi, Sanjeev Bhatia, Ajith Thomas, Praveen Mummaneni


Dr. Ketan Bulsara welcomed everyone and called the meeting to order.

Head Injury Initiative in India discussed. Dr. Pattisapu and Dr. Raj Narayan reported that the final Head Injury Guidelines are soon to be released.  2 states in India have already taken the lead to implement them at the state level. Indian Government and Media on board and supportive.  Actor Amitabh Bachhan and Cricketer Sachin Tendulkar have offered their celebrity to advance the cause.  Dr. Narayan suggested to have the Cricket Council of India take up the cause to promote adoption of the guidelines by the states.  Dr. Rajshekhar commented on the challenges inherent in adoption of the guidelines In India.  AASAN has donated Head Injury Books to major educational institutions in India. Dr. Bulsara thanked AAPI for collaborating with AASAN on this important public health initiative.  Members pledged funds to support initiative.

Nepal Earthquake Relief discussed.  Dr. Rajiv Jha, a former AASAN ambassador, is in Kathmandu leading the neurosurgery relief efforts.  AASAN has been in communication with him.  Members pledged funds for Nepal Earthquake Relief efforts.  Dr. Praveen Mummaneni updated the membership that the AANS, thru the NREF, has also joined in to help in the collection of funds thru their website.  AASAN will be responsible for distribution of the funds collected thru the NREF website.

Dr. Laligam Sekhar said that AASAN should also focus on the long term goal of training neurosurgeons in Nepal.  To that end, we will explore applying to the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation for funds to further that effort.

The AASAN website will have a Paypal link so that members can donate directly thru the website. There will also be a link to NREF Nepal Relief page so that members can donate to the effort.

Meeting adjourned at 7 PM, followed by Dinner at The Bombay Club.


October 20, 2014

Minutes of the American Association of South Asian Neurosurgeons (CNS Meeting in Boston, MA)

Meeting attendees: Praveen Mummanemi, Dinesh Ramanathan, Ajith Thomas, Ravi Gopal Varma, Akshay Hari, Ashwini Sharan, R.C. Mishra, Ashok Asthagiri, Sameer Sheth, Jogi Pattisapu, V. Rajshekhar, Mural Guthikonda, Vikram Prabhu, Beejal Amin, Neena Marupudi, Laligam Sekhar, Mayur Sharma, P.S. Holla, Promod Pillah, Abhishiek Sharma, Harman Singh, Ketan R. Bulsara, Shekar Kurpad

The meeting began at 6 pm with introductory remarks from AASAN president, Dr. Shekar Kurpad.

• We continue to strive to encourage new members

• International membership and resident membership to the executive board were discussed.

Drs. Rajshekhar and Mishra from NSI discussed AASAN’s collaboration. Due to the work of numerous members of AASAN, led by Dr. Shekar Kurpad at the CNS executive board, a memorandum of understanding was signed whereas the 2016 CNS annual meeting will be in collaboration with NSI. AASAN looks forward to actively contributing to the success of this meeting.

There was a lot of discussion regarding the Ambassador Fellowships. Dr. Prabhu will lead the effort to ensure that this important educational endeavor remains funded. Dr. Laligam Sekhar pointed out that we are truly fortunate in that the membership of AASAN now includes expertise in all subspecialty areas of neurosurgery. With that in mind, it is reasonable that AASAN ambassador applicants select mentors from the AASAN membership. Should there be an area that is not represented, then a selected AASAN member could potentially reach out to non-members to facilitate the training. There was consensus regarding incorporating this into the Ambassador process.

Drs. Raj Narayan, Jogi Pattisapu, Shekar Kurpad, and Ashwini Sharan have been involved in the head injury initiative for India through AASAN. This is an important endeavor that has the potential to influence millions of lives. Dr. Sharan recently contributed to this cause via a generous donation of funds to buy books related to head injury for numerous institutions in India.

Dr. Prabhu presented detailed suggestions regarding the mission of AASAN. As our organization has evolved, it is clear that we will need to revisit the mission statement and goals. This will likely happen in stages and will be one of the focuses as we move forward. The suggestions presented by Dr. Prabhu were well received and generated good discussion. The executive committee will discuss this further and a finalized proposal will be sent to the membership.  Dr. Kurpad announced the new officer slate from 2014-2016. The slate was approved unanimously.

President: Ketan R. Bulsara

Secretary: Harman Singh

Treasurer: Beejal Amin

The meeting concluded at 9pm.


April 7, 2014

Minutes of the American Association of South Asian Neurosurgeons (AANS Meeting in San Francisco)


Attendees: Jogi Pattisapu, Ketan R. Bulsara, Beejal Amin, Amit Singla, Ashima Singla, Ausaf Bari, Muhammad Omar Chohan, Laila Mohammad, Raj Murali, Laligam Sekhar, Saravanan Karuppiah, Bikash Bose, Ajay Niranjan, Nitin Tandon, Jagath Lal, Manish Ranjan, Sumit Sinha, Praveenkumar Salingondar, Paritosh Pandey, Neena Marupudi, Guthikonda Murali, Harman Singh, Dr. Deopujari, Deepu Banerjee, Sumit Sinha

The meeting began at 7:00pm with Dr. Ketan R. Bulsara, secretary of AASAN, welcoming everybody. This was followed by the Treasurer’s update by Dr. Beejal Amin. Ideas were exchanged about how to increase donations from the member base. At the recommendation of the members present at the meeting, a decision was made to mail out contribution letters to all members. Beejal Amin will obtain addresses for all AASAN members and mail out individual letters.

At this point, members of the Neurological Society of India including Dr. Deopujari, Dr. Deepu Banerjee, and Dr. Sumit Sinha arrived. Dr. Pattisapu introduced the members of NSI. A very constructive discussion on the goals of our exchange program and education mission ensued. Dr. Laligam Sekhar noted that in order to best meet the needs of the Neurological Society of India, we had to better understand what they needed from AASAN. What emanated from this discussion lead by Dr. Deopujari, Dr. Banerjee, and Dr. Sinha is that at the very fundamental level it would be an exchange of ideas and techniques. What was also clear is that we as members of AASAN do have greater access to technologies such as simulators which can contribute significantly to the educational effort as evident at the recent NSI meeting. Trying to facilitate these for joint meetings would be very valuable. There is no question that among AASAN’s membership are neurosurgeons who have achieved international fame in many aspects of neurosurgery. The NSI contingency expressed that having our membership actively participate in this meeting would facilitate exchange of ideas and contribute to attracting larger attendances at their meetings. The next NSI meeting is in Coimbatore, Tamilnadu December 12-15th, 2014. At the request of the NSI contingency, all members of AASAN interested in attending should send their potential topic of interest to present by early May 2014. There will be a separate mailing regarding this.

The final discussion of the evening focused on the success of the Ambassador program. This has been very successful and two distinct philosophies moving forward were presented. Dr. Laligam Sekhar emphasized that there are many regions of India that are underserved and have neurosurgeons there, who if trained in advanced methods, could contribute significantly to the welfare of that region. The NSI contingency discussed that trainees from well respected, established programs would benefit from the advanced training. These would not necessarily provide care to the underserved area. It was emphasized that the Ambassador program is based on a selection by a committee charged with selecting the applicant based on merit and that the executive committee approves those applicants selected by the committee. This is all outlined on the AASAN website under the direction of Dr. Harminder Singh. The two philosophies regarding the selection process generated discussion and will be further discussed in an executive committee meeting under the leadership of Dr. Shekar Kurpad.

The meeting and dinner adjourned at 9:00pm.



October 21, 2013

Minutes of the American Association of South Asian Neurosurgeons (CNS Meeting in San Francisco)

Attendees: Srinivasan Paramasivan, Sunil Furtado, Dinesh Ramanathan, Nauman Chaudhry, Pinakin Jethwa, Jenny Multani, Narayana Swamy, Awadhesh Jaiswal, Bernard Lyngdoh, Sisir Das, Milind Deogaankar, Sudheer Ambekar, Anil Nanda, Satish Krishnamurthy, Praveen Mummanenni, Ketan R. Bulsara, Sujit Prabhu, Bharat Guthikonda, Shankar Gopinath, Akash Patel, David Westman, Ashwini Sharan, Sunil Manjila, Aditya Vedantam, George Vilanilam, Arun Amar, Harman Singh, Sumita Yadav, Faiz Ahmad, Gurpreet Gandoke, S.S. Dhandapani, Raj Narayan, R.C. Mishra, V. Rajshekhar, Shekar Kurpad

The meeting began at 5:15pm with Shekar Kurpad, President of AASAN, welcoming everybody. This was followed by the Secretary’s update by Ketan R. Bulsara. At the AANS meeting, new committees were created to facilitate the needs of AASAN as we have continued to see growth and increased national and international recognition. These committees are in the early phase. No updates were presented by the previously assigned chairs of these committees. Given potential time constraints and need to move forward with these committees, a suggestion was made to reassign these responsibilities. The committees are the Newsletter Committee, Membership Committee, and Charter Mission Revision Committee. Pinakin Jethwa has been involved in the membership committee and will continue his involvement. Jenny Multani has reached out to APPI to see if there are mutual grounds for collaboration. She will update us about this at the AANS meeting.

Volunteers for the above committees were requested.
At this point, Shekar Kurpad introduced Dr. Rajsekhar, President elect of NSI. Dr. Rajsekhar pointed out that the relationship between AASAN and NSI spans over two decades. It began with the likes of Arnold Menezes, Setti Rengachary, Laligam Sekhar, and Raj Narayan. The perseverance of Joggi Pattisapu led to the first joint CNS/NSI meeting in 2009. Dr. Basant Misra was also intricately involved with that. We subsequently saw a successful NSI-CNS meeting in 2010. Now, we are poised to have the first joint meeting between NSI and AASAN in Mumbai, December 2013. The NSI-AASAN awardee this year is Dr. Maddineni. This collaboration has allowed exposure of American neurosurgeons to Indian neurosurgeons and vice versa. Many have won prestigious fellowships and awards facilitated by this collaboration. For the future, Dr. Rajsekhar proposes two AASAN delegates attend each NSI meeting, work on ways for faculty exchange programs, and create joint research initiatives. Ashwini Sharan suggested that all AASAN members become NSI members and in return the NSI members would join AASAN. This would be of mutual benefit to both societies. This suggestion was very well received.
Harman Singh requested that there be a method to identify programs in India that would be welcoming to AASAN members for clinical experience. Dr. Mishra suggested the development of such an International fellowship.

The treasurer’s report was provided by Shekar Kurpad. Beejal Amin could not attend the meeting due to an unforeseen circumstance. Zimmer renewed its support by donating $5000 for an AASAN member to attend the NSI meeting. The Stryker Spine Division donated $12,000 to renew the Ambassador Program. Anil Nanda suggested approaching Globus for donations. They are very active in NASS. Dr. Nanda could potentially help facilitate this.

George Vilanilam gave an outstanding presentation regarding his experience at UCLA through his Ambassador Program grant. Dr. Jha could not attend the meeting, but he too had an excellent experience during his observership with Dr. Mummaneni and hopes to give his report in person at our next AASAN meeting which will be at the 2014 AANS meeting in the spring. Written updates of both are posted on the website. There is no doubt that both individuals benefited from this experience and this will contribute to their future careers as academic neurosurgeons.
Raj Narayan emphasized the continued exchange of ideas and teachings that will continue to contribute to the growth of both societies.

The meeting adjourned at 6:15pm. Dinner followed at the Amber Restaurant at 7:30pm.October 21, 2013