Sunday, June 28, 2015
NICU in New York named after Sri Lankan physician
NEW YORK – At an official ceremony last week, Richmond University Medical Center (RUMC) dedicated the hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) in honour of the late Dr. Anantham Harin, a Sri Lankan physician, who directed the unit at the time of his death in 2010 at age 65.
Dr. Anantham Harin
“This is a simple honour for a man who earned the recognition and admiration not just of his colleagues here at Richmond University Medical Center, but served as a leader and role model in the Sri Lankan community on Staten Island,” said President and CEO, Dr. Daniel J. Messina, who delivered remarks during the dedication. “It is truly fitting that his memory be honoured in our Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, among the vulnerable babies he dedicated his life to.”
During his 30-year professional career at the NICU, more than 15,000 infants passed through him recording one of the lowest mortality rates in the State of New York. Described as a brilliant physician and a warm hearted humanitarian, Dr Harin was regularly featured in the New York media for his work with premature babies and was repeatedly listed among New York magazine’s list of Best Doctors.
While a resident of Staten Island, New York, Dr. Harin emerged as a leading figure in the borough’s Sri Lankan community, which at over 5,000 estimated residents is one of the largest outside of Sri Lanka itself. His career was described as an American success story.
Dr. Harin graduated from the University of Colombo Medical School in 1970 and migrated to the United States in 1973 to begin a residency at what is now SUNY Downstate Medical Center in Brooklyn, and an internship in pediatrics at Kings County Hospital Center.
After completing a fellowship in neonatology at North Shore University Hospital in Long Island, Dr. Harin worked as an attending physician in neonatology at Bellevue Hospital Center and NYU Medical Center in Manhattan. Having relocated to Staten Island in 1979, Dr. Harin began working at the former St. Vincent’s Hospital (now RUMC) in the early 1980s where he worked until his passing.
Last week’s dedication ceremony was held at the University hospital auditorium in the presence of doctors, nurses, medical staff, his wife Nirupa and his friends in the Sri Lankan expatriate community.
The official unveiling of the plaque at the NICU preceded a memorial lecture.
This news item was sent by Indra Anandasabapathy who is also a resident of Staten Island, NY. Dr. Harin was our colleague Satchie's brother.