Renowned radiologist and former director of the Nizam Institute for Medical Sciences in Hyderabad, Dr. Kakarla Subba Rao died during treatment at the Krishna Institute of Medical Sciences (KIMS) in Secunderabad in the early hours of Friday morning. He was 96 years old.
Dr. Rao entered the KIMS a month ago with age-related health complications. Doctors at the hospital said he took his last breath in the early hours of Friday morning.
Dr. Rao was known for his efforts to transform NIMS into a specialty hospital. He was its first director between 1985 and 1990 and later between 1997 and 2004 before retiring.
Dr. Rao was born on January 25, 1925 into a middle-class farming family in Pedamuttevi, a small village in Krishna District. After completing his MBBS at Andhra Medical College in 1950, he completed his stay in the United States. He was a professor of radiology at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York before returning to India in 1985-86.
Following a call from the late Chief Minister NT Rama Rao, he joined NIMS and endeavored to develop into a highly specialized hospital. In recognition of his valuable contributions to medicine, the Indian government honored him with a Padma Shri in 2000.
Dr. Rao was the founding president of the Telugu Association of North America (TANA), an umbrella organization for Telugu-speaking people in the United States.
Condolences pour in
TDP President N. Chandrababu Naidu said Dr. Rao’s death is an “irrevocable loss”, especially for the people of Telugu. Mr. Naidu remembered Dr. Rao’s exemplary record as a radiologist and director of NIMS for over five decades, said Rao’s passion in serving took him to great heights.
MLA and chairman and executive director of the Indo-American Cancer Hospital and Research Institute Basavatarakam, Nandamuri Balakrishna, said Dr. Rao is an educator, a respected radiologist and philanthropist who has touched thousands of lives with his compassion and empathy.
He fondly remembered the active role that Dr. Rao played in moving the hospital and research institute to a respectable location in the country, both in terms of access and affordability.
“His death left a void and it is an irreplaceable loss to our institute,” he said.
Dr. Fr Raghu Ram, director of the KIMS Ushalakshmi Breast Disease Center in Hyderabad, said he had lost a close family friend.
“DR. Rao has been my role model, guide, and philosopher for over 36 years since I entered medical school. When I was faced with a dilemma as to whether or not to move to India in 2007, he was the first one I met got an opinion. He said people would not like you to make radical changes, even at a young age. He advised me to stand the pressure and keep my feet and meet your ambitions as there is no sweeter one Place on earth than the motherland. From that day on, for the past 14 years, whenever I needed advice, he was only a phone call away, always supporting and encouraging me, ”he said.
“It’s really sad that he left us. He came from a village in Krishna County and worked for the government and extended the Yeoman ministry to the countryside, ”said K. Pattabhi Ramaiah, general surgeon at Kamineni Clinic in Vijayawada.