APPNA-AZ Organizes Successful Community Charity Gala

By Yousuf Bhuvad

Phoenix, AZ: As we prepared to bid farewell to the year 2011, we could not but feel blessed for the opportunities to help the people of the world hit by calamities, natural disasters and poverty. The charitable programs organized by various community organizations in the valley benefited the noble causes, both locally as well as globally. One such event to help a local food bank and its free clinic in the Phoenix area was hosted by the APPNA-Az, the Arizona chapter of the Association of Physicians of Pakistani Descent of North America and health care providers. This whole-day event was held on Dec 10 th at the Phoenix Airport Marriott. The morning session of the program was dedicated to the Continuing Medical Education (CME) program.  A general body meeting was held in the afternoon, followed by a community charity gala in the evening.

The CME program started at 8.45 am. A record number of physicians and sponsors attended this part of the program. This year the topics of discussion were Diabetic Retinopathies, Cardiac CT Angiography and Valley Fever.  The session concluded with lunch and informal networking sessions among the doctors and the sponsors.

The APPNA-Az organization general body met in the afternoon. The current President, Secretary and Treasurer presented their reports for 2011.

Dr. Methab Siddiky started the evening program at 7.30 pm with her opening remarks. This was followed by a recitation from the Holy Qur’an by Salman Faizi and the renditions of national anthems.  Dr. Azhar Jan, the president of APPNA-A,z welcomed the guests and thanked the team of volunteers who helped organize the event. He also offered his gratitude to each one of the sponsors for their financial support in making the event possible.

Dr Jan gave a historical perspective of the APPNA-AZ highlighting its accomplishments of the last few years. He continued with a presentation entitled “Innovations of Pakistani Physicians in the United States.” The presentation focused on the accomplishments of selected Pakistani American physicians over the last several years who developed new cures, techniques and medical procedures that benefited workers in the field of medicine and health care in general.

Dr. Jan introduced the keynote speaker, Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, the past president of the Arizona Medical Association, who enlightened the audience by his talk on Health Care Reform.  Dr Jasser was thanked and appreciated for taking the time out of a previous engagement so that he could address the APPNA-AZ audience.

Dr. Jan also gave a brief introduction of the free clinic run by APPNA-Az in the Phoenix area. Omar Salim, one of the volunteer physicians at the free clinic, furnished more detailed information about the facility, overall operation, cost and the type of patients being served. He emphasized the need for additional funds for the expansion of the facility, more equipment and support. The medical student volunteers came to the stage and individually shared their learning experiences and how they felt about being part of the noble cause. With the help of volunteers the pledges forms were distributed to raise funds for the clinic.

Dr. Jan welcomed Sunrise Health and Hospice who took to the stage to formally introduce the company and its services. Sunrise was the major sponsor for the event. Dinner was announced and the audience enjoyed the hot food provided by Copper Kettle.

After dinner, Dr. Faran Bashir presented Dr. Jan with a plaque recognizing his services and contributions to the APPNA-AZ Chapter during the last 5 years. The outgoing president served 4 years on the Executive Board as a Treasurer, Secretary and President of APPNA-Az.  During his presidency he established committees, focused on local causes, enabled a greater community involvement and promoted the organization by way of the social network.

Dr. Habib Khan announced the new APPNA-AZ 2012 committee members. They are: Dr. Faran Bashir, President; Dr. Methab Siddiky, Secretary and Dr. Khaver Kirmani, Treasurer.

Dr. Jan congratulated the new newly elected team and wished them well.  He would continue to serve as past president and advisor.

The entertainment program started with a musical performance by Hanif Noor Mohammed and his band from the Los Angeles area. Hanif delighted the audience with his selection of contemporary and golden era songs. The music program concluded at around 12.00 am. Dr. Jan thanked the performers and everyone who had come to the event.

Congratulations are due to Dr Azhar Jan and his wife Saba Farooqui for their relentless efforts in making the event a success and raising the bar of excellence for future APPNA-AZ events. Over 300 guests attended this gala event, including physicians from Kingman, Yuma and Tucson.

Please continue your support in future by sending your contributions to

APPNA-AZ 1331, N. 7th Street #400

Phoenix, AZ-85006

The APPNA tax exempt ID # is 36-0291079.  Phone:602-277-6181 ext.103

For additional pictures of the event, please visit APPNA-AZ Annual Banquet 2011



Editor: Akhtar M. Faruqui
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