Pulmonary Associates of Corpus Christi
By Jody Joseph Marmel
Dr. Salim Surani founded Pulmonary Associates of Corpus Christi over ten years ago in the Coastal Bend. He began as a solo practitioner and then Dr. Alamgir Khan joined the group. As the years passed, the need for Pulmonary Specialists in the Coastal Bend region increased and Dr. Surani knew that the group had to expand to meet the community and patients’ needs in both the hospital and office setting.
A few years ago, Pulmonary Associates of Corpus Christi started adding Pulmonary Specialists and as of 2018, the group has nine physicians on board to help the patients in both a critical care setting as well as follow up care of pulmonary medicine and sleep medicine. Dr. Surani explains, “Nationwide, there is an overall shortage of Pulmonary Specialists as it is an extremely demanding, challenging and stressful specialty. Many times, we are dealing with patients that are dying or are in the last stages of their life. We had to be empathic, passionate and considerate while providing the state of the art care to those patients. We knew that to get the best of the best, we have to provide extra incentives for our fellow Pulmonary Specialists so that they want to stay here in Corpus Christi as opposed to the bigger cities and that is exactly what we have done.”
The mission of Pulmonary Specialists of Corpus Christi is to provide the best patient care in the most dignified manner and to date
Pulmonary Associates of Corpus Christi provides excellent working conditions and they have helped educate the residents in the area of Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, Emergency Medicine, Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine. Dr. Surani mentioned that “In addition to helping graduate other specialties, we plan to graduate pulmonary and critical care trained physician from our training program. This will help to train our own physician in his specialty to combat the national shortage of Pulmonary & Critical Care physicians and therefore our success rate of keeping our physicians on the Coastal Bend region and this has been one of the most rewarding parts of my career.”
As the population ages, people tend to get sick and there is an increased need for Pulmonary Specialists throughout the area. The physicians of Pulmonary Associates of Corpus Christi cover the Intensive Care Units in several hospitals throughout the Coastal Bend and provide the services needed in the critical care setting. Dr. Surani states, “We have created a structure so that we all rotate between the hospitals to provide the care which is critical to the patients in the Corpus Christi hospitals as well as serving patients from Coastal Bend region in our office. This benefits our patients prevent physician burnout in our group.”
The mission of Pulmonary Specialists of Corpus Christi is to provide the best patient care in the most dignified manner and to date, they have met and exceeded their mission with excellent patient care by world-class physicians. The long-term goals are to benefit the patients in the Coastal Bend. “We mentor and train all of our new and young physicians. This way, we know that we will be leaving our patients in good hands who can deliver an excellent patient care.” Dr. Surani continues, “Teaching goes hand in hand along with taking care of patients with critical illness. We believe in evidence-based practice and patient care and this reflects routinely in our practice. We also have focused on sustenance plan, as if one of us gets older or retire, our practice does not miss a beat and the continuity of care is always there for our patients of the Coastal Bend Region.”
Salim R Surani, MD, MPH, MSc, FACP, FAASM, FCCP
Dr. Salim Surani serves as an Adjunct Clinical Professor of Medicine, Department of Pulmonary, and the Critical Care & Sleep Medicine Department at Texas A&M University. He also currently serves as the Program Director for the Pulmonary & Critical Care Fellowship Program in Corpus Christi. Dr. Surani completed his fellowship in Pulmonary Medicine from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. He also has his Masters in Public Health & Epidemiology from Yale University and a Masters in Health Management from the University of Texas, Dallas.
Dr. Surani also has served as secretary and board of trustee for THE CHEST Foundation. In addition to this, Dr. Surani was a grant reviewer for the government of Australia and Singapore as well as Ranis (the granting agency for the European Nation).
Dr. Salim Surani is the Medical Director of Critical Care Services at Christus Spohn Hospital-Corpus Christi. He has authored more than 150 articles in the peer review journals and has written several books and book chapters. He has also served as the reviewer for more than 20 peer review journals. Dr. Surani’s area of interests include, but are not limited to Critical Care, Asthma, COPD, Sleep Medicine, Quality Assurance Programs and Pulmonary Infections.
Dr. Surani serves on the editorial board for several journals. He has also served as an invited speaker at regional, national and international scientific conferences. Dr. Surani has been on numerous committees of local, regional, national and international organizations and has received several community and teaching awards. He founded It’s Your Life Foundation, a community educational foundation.
Sheila Zanoria, MD
Dr. Sheila Zanoria attended Cebu Institute of Medicine in the Philippines for her Medical Degree and graduated Cum Laude. She then completed her Post Graduate Internship at the University of the Philippines-Philippine General Hospital. Dr. Zanoria secured an Internship in Internal Medicine and attained her Residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Connecticut. In 2016, she was awarded a Fellowship in Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at the University of Connecticut.
She is on the medical staff at Corpus Christi Medical Center, Bay Area Medical Center and Doctor’s Regional Medical Center. Dr. Zanoria practices at Pulmonary Associates of Corpus Christi. She is affiliated with several hospitals including Christus Spohn Shoreline Hospital, Post-Acute Medical-North and South Corpus Christi, and Care Regional Medical Center in Port Aransas.
In addition to her busy medical career throughout the Coastal Bend, Dr. Zanoria is the Chair of the Clinical Competence Committee-Pulmonary Critical Care Fellowship at Bay Area Medical Center. She is a member of the Pulmonary Rehabilitation Assembly of the American Thoracic Society Web Committee. Dr. Zanoria is board certified in both Internal and Pulmonary Medicine.
Alamgir Ahmad Khan, MD
Dr. Alamgir Ahmad Khan received his MBBS at Khyber Medical College in Peshawar, Pakistan. In 1993, he completed an Internship (6 months in medicine and 6 months in general surgery) at the Postgraduate Medical Institute, Lady Reading Hospital Peshawar, Pakistan. Dr.Khan then completed his Postgraduate Training in General Surgery at the Postgraduate Medical Institute, Hayat Abad Medical Complex in Pakistan.
He completed his Residency in Internal Medicine at Interfaith Medical Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. In 2004, Dr. Khan attained his Pulmonary Fellowship and in 2005, he achieved a Sleep Medicine Fellowship at Sleep Disorders Institute at St. Luke’s Roosevelt Hospital Center, N.Y. In 2006, Dr. Khan received his Critical Care Medicine Fellowship at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, N.Y.
Dr. Khan is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine-Critical Care Medicine, American Board of Sleep Medicine, American Board of Internal Medicine-Pulmonary Medicine and the American Board of Internal Medicine.
Dr. Khan is the Program Director, Critical Care Medicine Fellowship at Bay Area Medical Center, University of North Texas, Corpus Christi. He is also the Chair of the Department of Pulmonary Medicine at Christus Spohn Hospital.
Dr. Khan has been practicing Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine in Corpus Christi since 2006 and he finds helping the patients on the Coastal Bend a challenging, yet rewarding career.
Chinthaka P. Bulathsinghala, MD
Dr. Chinthaka P. Bulathsinghala received an M.B.B.S.-Faculty of Medicine, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka in January, 2002. In 2011, Dr. Bulathsinghala completed his Residency-Department of Internal Medicine at Danbury Hospital which is affiliated with Yale University School of Medicine in Danbury, Connecticut. He then secured his Fellowship in Pulmonary and Critical Care at the University of Connecticut in Farmington in 2014.
Dr. Bulathsinghala is a Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of North Texas. He is on the Faculty of the Pulmonary/Critical Care Fellowship at Corpus Christi Medical Center-Bay Area and he is the Director of the Bronchoscopy Lab for the Pulmonary/ Critical Care Fellowship at Corpus Christi Medical Center.
Since July, 2014-Dr. Bulathsinghala has been a practicing Pulmonary and Critical Care Physician at Pulmonary Associates of Corpus Christi. He has also been a Teaching Attending (Pulmonary and Critical Care) for the Emergency Medicine Residency Program and Family Medicine Residency Program at Christus Spohn Memorial and Shoreline Hospital in Corpus Christi.
He is Board Certified in Internal Medicine, Pulmonary Medicine, and Critical Care. Dr. Bulathsinghala has been involved in numerous publications and research. He is a member of the American College of Chest Physicians, the American Board of Internal Medicine, and the Connecticut Thoracic Society.
Humayun Anjum, MD
Dr. Humayun Anjum was born and raised in Karachi, Pakistan. He received an M.B.B.S. (Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery) with honors at Dow Medical College in 2001. In 2002, Dr. Anjum completed his Internship in Medicine and Surgery at the Civil Hospital, Ziauddin Medical University Hospital and Mayo Hospital/ King Edward Medical College in Pakistan. He then finished his Residency in Internal Medicine at Columbia University New York in 2006. Dr. Anjum further completed his medical training in 2014. He attained his Fellowship in Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at RUSH University/John H Stroger, Jr. Hospital of Cook County in Chicago.
Dr. Anjum is Board Certified in Internal Medicine, Pulmonary Medicine and Critical Care Medicine. He is an Attending Physician –Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine at Pulmonary Associates of Corpus Christi.
With several academic appointments as well as professional appointments, Dr. Anjum stays active in various medical committees on the Coastal Bend. In 2016, he was awarded with the Healing Hero Award-a patient nominated award for compassion and dedication at Christus Spohn Hospital-Shoreline. He also received the Specialty Teaching Award at Texas A & M University/ Christus Spohn Hospital-Shoreline.
Dr. Anjum defines the best part of his career as the connections and relationships he makes on a daily basis with patients and staff members. The most rewarding part of the profession is being able to live up to the patients’ trust and providing the best possible care.
Abhay P. Vakil, MD
Dr. Abhay P. Vakil attended Smt. N.H.L. Municipal Medical College in Ahmedabad, India and received his Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery (M.B.B.S.) Degree in 2008. He then traveled to New York and completed his Residency in Internal Medicine at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center in 2012. In 2014, Dr. Vakil received his Fellowship in Pulmonary Medicine at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center. But, he didn’t stop there. In 2016, Dr. Vakil completed his Fellowship in Critical Care Medicine at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota.
Dr. Vakil is Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Pulmonary Medicine. He is a member of the American Thoracic Society and the American College of Chest Physicians. He has an impressive presence in peer reviewed book chapters as well as journals.
Dr. Vakil’s remarkable history of both international and national presentations and lectures and his extensive involvement in medical research is outstanding.
Khalid Sherani, MD
Dr. Khalid Sherani was born in Dublin, Ireland and he spent his teenage years growing up in Pakistan and England. He received his medical degree from St. Georges University School of Medicine in Grenada, West Indies. Dr. Sherani completed his Internal Medicine Residency at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center in New York and was the Chief Resident, Internal Medicine from 2013 to 2014. He then went on to attain a Pulmonary Medicine Fellowship at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center. From 2016 to 2017, he completed his Critical Care Fellowship at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York.
In 2015, Dr. Sherani received the American Thoracic Society award for Innovations in Fellowship Education. From 2013 through 2016, he was a Clinical Instructor at St. Georges University at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center.
Dr. Sherani is a member of the American College of Chest Physicians, the American Thoracic Society and the American College of Physicians. He explains why he is a proud team physician at Pulmonary Associate of Corpus Christi. “I enjoy being part of a multi-disciplinary team and taking care of the most critically ill patients. I strive to help patients understand their disease so they will take better care of themselves in order to have a quality of life.”
Rene Franco Jr. M.D.
Rene Franco Jr. M.D. started his journey in the medical field at Texas A & M University-Corpus Christi. He received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology in 2003. In January 2010, Dr. Franco attained his medical degree at the Medical University of The Americas in Nevis, West Indies. He then completed his Internal Medicine Residency Program at the University of Arizona, South Campus in 2014. In June of 2017, Dr. Franco successfully finished his Pulmonary Critical Care Fellowship at Baylor Scott & White.
With a plethora of clinical experience and ongoing research experience, Dr. Franco has an exemplary history of volunteer work in several communities. He has also been involved in numerous presentations. In October of 2015, Dr. Franco attended the CHEST Annual Conference in Canada. He was a presenter of ‘The Diagnostic Value and Economic Impact of Fiberoptic Cytologic Brushing during Fiberoptic Bronchoscopy’.
Rivi De Silva, MD
Dr. Rivi De Silva received his Medical Degree at the University of Colombo in Sri Lanka. He then traveled to Long Branch, New Jersey and completed his Internal Medicine Residency at Monmouth Medical Center. From 2013 to 2014, Dr. De Silva was the Chief Resident (3rd year) of Internal Medicine. In 2017, he achieved a Fellowship in Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at the University of Connecticut.
Dr. De Silva is Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Pulmonary Diseases. He is a member of the American Thoracic Society, the American College of Chest Physicians, Sri Lanka Medical Council, the American Medical Association and the Society of Critical Care Medicine.
From 2016 to 2017, Dr. De Silva was involved with two research projects at the University of Connecticut. He conducted the study titled “An analysis on Cardiac troponin testing in adult patients with sepsis admitted to a medical intensive care unit”. He also conducted the study “Measurement of exhaled nitric oxide (eNO) in patients admitted with COPD exacerbation”. This was a prospective study testing the exhaled nitric oxide in patients admitted with COPD exacerbation. Dr. De Silva has also been actively involved in various publications.