Dr. Rajam Ramamurthy Receives the Golden Aesculapius Award from the Bexar County Medical Society

Dr. Rajam Ramamurthy, receiving the Golden Aesculapius Award from Dr. Sheldon Gross, President of the Bexar County Medical Society. It is the highest honor given to a physician for services to medicine and the society.

Dr. Rajam Ramamurthy, receiving the Golden Aesculapius Award from Dr. Sheldon Gross, President of the Bexar County Medical Society. It is the highest honor given to a physician for services to medicine and the society.

SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS:  On January 20, Rajam Ramamurthy, MD received the Golden Aesculapius award from the Bexar County Medical Society in San Antonio, Texas. This award is the Society’s highest honor recognizing a lifetime of distinguished service by a BCMS member to our patients and the medical profession. Dr. Ramamurthy is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Pediatrics, Division of Neonatology, University of Texas Health in San Antonio.

Dr. Ramamurthy was born in a small gold mining town, Kolar Gold Fields in South India where she completed high school. She received her undergraduate education and entered medical school at the Prestigious, Bangalore Medical College.  She came to the US in 1967 to Cook County Hospital in Chicago Illinois where she completed her pediatrics training and fellowship in Neonatology. She moved to San Antonio in 1977 with her husband who was professor of Anesthesiology and a pain management specialist. Her son Sendhil Ramamurthy is an actor and daughter Sujatha is an Internal Medicine and Psychiatry specialist.

She is a distinguished teacher. In 1989 she received the outstanding faculty award from the graduating class of 1989. The same year she also received the Presidential Award for Excellence in teaching.  She developed the first structured course to teach resuscitation of the newborn. As a regional trainer, she trained hospital-based instructors in almost 59 hospitals in south Texas.

Since that time she has organized the Neonatal Resuscitation Program of the American Academy of pediatrics every year for the incoming freshman residents in the Departments of Pediatrics, Anesthesiology, Family Medicine and OB/GYN. To Date she has trained over 700, residents and fellows in Newborn resuscitation. In 1984she was inducted to the San Antonio Women’s Hall of Fame in the ‘Science and research’ category.  She received the TMA Academic Excellence award in 2013. That same year she received the ROTA Award the highest honor for teaching given by the University of Texas Reagents.

Mentoring physicians coming from international schools has been a big part of her service. Twenty-five percent of the physicians and residents in training in the US are from international schools. She finds, introducing them to American Medicine, preparing them to excel in this environment and serve the patients locally with understanding of the diverse economic and social background they come from, very rewarding.  This involvement led to her appointment from AMA to the National organization; Educational Council for Foreign Medical Graduates, Board of Directors where she served for 8 years.

She was chair of the International Medical Graduates (IMG) section of TMA. Her interest in IMG issues led to her becoming the chair of the IMG section of AMA. She wrote the first document on ‘International Medical Graduates in the Health Care workforce in the US.  In  2003, she received the Frank C. Webber, MD Award from the Medical Student Section of the Texas Medical Association.

In 2004 Dr. Ramamurthy became the President of Bexar County Medical Society, the first woman president of the society in its 153 year history. She is also the first woman to receive the Golden Aesculapius award.

Dr. Ramamurthy has also provided yeomen service to the San Antonio in the area of arts education. She is one of the founders of the Arathi School of Indian dance in 1981. She has served on numerous arts boards including the Dean’s advisory council of the College of Liberal and Fine arts of UTSA, Carver Development Board and currently serves on the board of Arts San Antonio an organization that focuses on bringing outstanding national and international performers and connects them with students in area high schools through the ARTSTEACH program.  The Golden Aesculapius Award is a fitting recognition of her lifetime dedication to teaching and service to patients and the community.