South Asian Public Health Association SAPHA Quarterly Newsletter


In This Issue
Join the Board of Directors!
Spotlight On
Health Care Reform - The ACA
Brown Paper 2nd Edition
NCSO's Letter Regarding Nomination of Ray Kelly
SAPHA Happenings
Quick Links
SAPHA is the premier South Asian-related public health organization in America, in existence since 1999. SAPHA is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to improving the health and well-being of South Asians and the communities in which they live in America.
Join Our Mailing List
Become a SAPHA Member! 

We invite you to join us in our work! You can start by becoming an active part of our free listserv, joining and asking your colleagues to join SAPHA as a member, and volunteering to help one of SAPHA's committees. 


Being part of SAPHA is an opportunity to network with other professionals invested in the health of South Asians in the United States and to promote the health of South Asian communities. Be sure to visit our membership page at to get more information on how to become a member of this exciting organization.

Join a SAPHA Committee!

Business Meeting
SAPHA is currently seeking dedicated professionals to join one of SAPHA's Committees: 




Membership/ Nominations

Partnerships/Local Groups



SAPHA Committees meet regularly via conference call to discuss how to advance the mission and goals of SAPHA and to better serve the South Asian community. For more information visit SAPHA'S committee's page!

SAPHA 2013 Board Members

Neelum Aggarwal
(Communications Committee Co-Chair)
Nasiya Ahmed
(Communications Committee Co-Chair)
Nitasha Chaudhary- (President
Aparna Badkas
Karishma Dhru-
(Membership Committee Chair)
Nazeera Darwood
(Local Chapters/ Partnership Committee Chair)
Bindu Garapaty (Secretary)
Memoona Hasnain- (Research Committee Chair)
Srilekha Palle-
(Vice President)
Ami Shah-


SAPHA New Logo 

Dear SAPHA Professionals,  

It is our great pleasure to welcome you to the South Asian Public Health Association (SAPHA) Summer 2013 Newsletter! 


Hurricane season officially began on June 1, 2013 and will continue until November 30, 2013. Given the impact of these emergencies, it is critical we plan for the worst. Being prepared is how we change behavior to limit the impact of the disaster on people. 

South Asian communities, similar to other minority groups, have unique challenges - whether linguistic, cultural, or otherwise - that made advanced disaster preparation crucial. Emergency preparedness although extremely important, has not been seen as a very critical within the South Asian community. As we face larger and more drastic emergencies, our communities need to learn how to overcome these barriers. Learn how to be better prepared in your community via the SAPHA Factsheet on Emergency Preparedness. Do you know of more resources on how to be better prepared in our community? Email us!


Beyond disaster preparedness, SAPHA would also like to highlight some of other activities that we have been tirelessly working on. Our Partnership Committee Chair, Nazeera Dawood is working to develop guidelines on how to start local chapters throughout the U.S. This will include how national SAPHA can also support these chapters. If you are interested in starting a local chapter, email us at!


The team working on the Brown Paper has also made lots of strides this summer. Please see the information below on how you can be more involved. 


Further, SAPHA is currently seeking applications for Board nominations. Nominations are due on September 15th. We would love for you to consider a nomination!


Lastly, SAPHA would love to share your stories. Have you recently published an article on South Asian Health? Have you participated in a health fair for South Asians? Do you know about upcoming South Asian health-related meetings? Let us know and we can publicize this in our next newsletter.


While SAPHA has accomplished a tremendous amount of work in the past, you will note we have much more to do and we want to work with you to help us achieve optimal health for our communities and our field.


What Can YOU do?

In addition to joining a committee, if you have not already done so, please ask your friends/colleagues to join the SAPHA listserv as well as visit our website at, to stay updated on SAPHA related-happenings. You can now also stay updated with SAPHA's activities on Facebook.


We invite you to join us in meeting our common goal of improving the health of South Asians and the communities in which they live in America - let's continue to move forward!!


Thank you


SAPHA Board 2013

Join the SAPHA Board of Directors!    


SAPHA is now accepting applications for its Board of Directors. Consider nominating yourself or someone you know to be part of this exciting and dynamic organization!


We seek a diverse Board, comprised of individuals with interests and/or backgrounds representing many areas such as law, financial management, organizational development and management, public and media relations, fundraising, web design and maintenance, particularly as these may be utilized in public health fields such as health disparities & health equity, mental health, clinical care, health promotion and disease & prevention activities.  


Essential for the nominee is having a strong commitment to the health and well-being of South Asians and the communities in which they live within the United States as well as the willingness to work together in furthering the mission of SAPHA.


For more information on applying for the 2014-2016 Board of Directors, please contact Applications are due on September 15, 2013. Two- year term begins January 2014.

Spotlight On: Memoona Hasnain, MD, MHPE, PhD  
SAPHA sends it's warmest congratulations to Memoona Hasnain, SAPHA Research Committee Chair, who recently was named a Macy Faculty Scholar. Memoona is an Associate Professor and Associate Head for Faculty Development and Research in the Department of Family Medicine at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine. She is also the director of UIC's Patient-centered Medicine Scholars Program and Health Disparities Scholars Program and the current chair of the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine's group on faculty development.

As a Macy Faculty Scholar, Dr. Hasnain will develop and implement a longitudinal team-based interprofessional health disparities training program for medicine, pharmacy, nursing and public health students. Trainees will work in interprofessional teams to acquire core attitudes, values and competencies necessary for practicing patient-centered medicine, including relationship building, collaborative decision making, care coordination, communication and education. Students will also participate in mentored community-based participatory research and quality improvement projects designed to provide learners with essential competencies to optimize care for special needs populations.


Health Care Reform - The Affordable Care Act


 The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was signed on March 2010 into law. Among other things, it is meant to make preventive care more accessible and affordable for many Americans. Part of understanding the ACA is understanding what new health insurance changes and options will be available, as those options will begin unfolding October 1, 2013. The Asian Pacific Islander Health Forum has developed outreach and educational material on the ACA in some South Asian languages, at this time including Bengali and Hindi. Their resources on the ACA can be found here. In addition, more information can be found on the U.S Department of Health and Human Services website, including state-by-state facts and top ten things to know for special populations (including women and small business owners). Given many South Asians are small business owners, employed by businesses that don't offer coverage, or don't have insurance simply as a cost-saving measure, this new reform has the potential to really allow South Asians the opportunity to have more control over their health issues. 
The Kaiser Family Foundation has also put together some resources to help Americans understand the changes that are on the way. "The YouToons Get Ready For Obamacare" is a new animated video that was put together to help people understand that changes that they can expect, and can be viewed here. "The YouToons Get Ready For Obamacare" is one of many resources on the Foundation's website to help the American public better understand health care reform. Other resources that can found there include a health insurance subsidy calculator, an interactive ACA implementation timeline, and frequently asked questions
 Seeking Authors for Brown Paper 2nd Edition
SAPHA New Logo
Brown Paper 1st edition was published in 2002, and was the first report of its kind to evaluate and summarize existing knowledge and key health indicators for South Asian Americans. The initiative was completed entirely by volunteers made up of public health students and leading expert public health professionals around the country. The authors made recommendations for policymakers, health care providers, and community outreach workers, based on their research and analysis of each of the topics.  


There has been much progress in the area of South Asian American health research since the original publication, and so the SAPHA Board is in the process of updating this groundbreaking compendium. If you are interested in being an author for Brown Paper 2nd Edition, please
contact us. You can find the author invitation contributor agreement, and additional information by clicking on their respective links. Inquiries regarding the Brown Paper 2nd Edition can be directed to Asra Azam at 


You can currently access the complete Brown Paper 1st edition 
online by clicking here.
NCSO's Letter Regarding Nomination of Ray Kelly for Secretary of Homeland Security

The National Coalition of South Asian Organizations (NCSO), a network of organizations coordinated by South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT), that serve, organize and advocate on behalf of the South Asian community, recently wrote a letter to the White House to express concern over the potential nomination of New York City Police Department (NYPD) Commissioner Ray Kelly to the role of Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security. The letter expressed the disappointment and alarm over the NYPD's problematic policies under Commissioner Kelly's leadership, including practices of profiling and surveillance which violate the civil rights of Americans and destroy community relations. The letter was signed by thirty-six organizations, and can be viewed here
SAPHA Happenings

Join a SAPHA Committee!

Our committees meet via conference call once a month or less to discuss how to improve those areas to help promote the work of SAPHA and advocate for our members. We also hope that by participating in a committee, it will help you in your professional goals!


Please note that you have to be a Supporting member of SAPHA ($30 annual dues) to be eligible to participate in a committee. For more information or if you are interested, please click on a committee above to email the committee chair. SAPHA's success depends on the commitment and hard work of it's committees!


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Stay updated with SAPHA's latest news, events and happenings by following our Facebook Page. Connect with other colleagues in the field by posting questions or comments on the wall.  


Health Events

Upcoming National Conferences Microphone




Email SAPHA if you would like an event or research posted here!