India honors Ram for work in hypertension

By Jan Jarvis

Dr. Venkata S. Ram, who joined the faculty of UT Southwestern Medical Center in 1977, has been recognized by the government of India with one of the highest honors the country bestows on an individual.

The Padma Shri award was presented to Dr. Ram for his “distinguished” and “impactful” service in medicine, hypertension, and preventive cardiology.

Ram Venkata, M.D., Shri Pranab Mukherjee
The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee (right), presents Dr. Venkata S. Ram with the Padma Shri award.

Learning he would receive the Padma Shri award was both a great honor and quite a surprise, said Dr. Ram, Clinical Professor of Internal Medicine at UT Southwestern since 1998.

“What amazing news it was when I got a telephone call from the Indian government asking whether I would accept the Padma Shri award,” Dr. Ram said. “Padma awards are considered as a matter of national pride and prestige and are given only once a year.”

In recent years, Dr. Ram has divided his time between Dallas and India. In India, he is President and CEO of MediCiti Medical College, MediCiti Institute of Medical Sciences, and the MediCiti group of hospitals.

His work in India has focused on raising awareness of hypertension and the role it plays in mortality. He assisted the Hypertension Society of India in developing guidelines for detection, management, and follow-up of the disease.

In addition, Dr. Ram recently received the coveted Marvin Moser Clinical Hypertension Award from the American Society of Hypertension (ASH), the highest honor given by the organization. The award recognizes excellence in clinical hypertension and contributions to the field.

“It is indeed an honor for me to get this unique recognition,” Dr. Ram said. “Having been associated with ASH since its founding, I have watched the organization grow to become a highly respected scientific body in the U.S. and abroad.”

Dr. Ram, recognized for his expertise in the treatment of hypertension, has written 310 articles, book chapters, and booklets. He also co-edited Individualized Therapy of Hypertension and recently completed a second book, Hypertension: A Clinical Guide.