PICU Founder Awarded Life time Achievement Award, Professor Sunit Singhi Former Head, Department of Pediatrics, PGI Chandigarh was awarded the IXth Dr. K.C. Chaudhuri Life time Achievement Award 2016 for his excellent services to pediatrics and pediatric Critical care in a function held in Delhi on 18th Sept 2016.
Prof Singhi successfully established India’s first Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) at PGIMER, Chandigarh and played a leading role in developing the super specialty of Pediatric Critical Care and Emergency Care in India, by training numerous pediatricians. He conducted more than 100 Pediatric advanced life Support Courses all across the country and trained thousands of pediatricians in resuscitation. He started postdoctoral super-specialty DM courses, for the first time in the country in Pediatric Critical Care, Hemato-Oncology, Neurology, Immunology and Rheumatology.
It is difficult to capture all the research and academic activities and honours that Professor Singhi obtained during his career. His research accomplishments include 15 major National and International collaborative hospital / community based research projects, funded by World Health Organization, Indian Council of Medical Research, INCLEN and Pediatric Research Foundation from Karolinska Institute. He has authored more than 350 peer-reviewed publications, 6 books, guided about 100 M.D. and 4 Ph.D. theses, while he / his thesis students have won 15 awards, including 7 ST Achar Gold Medals and 3 VB Raju awards of Indian Academy of Pediatrics and several international agencies.
His basic and clinical research helped in understanding the fluid and electrolyte balance in preterm and normal newborns, and infectious diseases especially bacterial meningitis, bronchiolitis and pneumonia. This work was adopted in the WHO guidelines for management of meningitis. He explained the pathogenesis of oxytocin induced hyperbilirubinemia and established the link between transplacental fluid overload and transient tachypnea of the newborn. His research papers are cited in textbooks and monographs and abstracted in Year-books of Pediatrics, Obstetrics-Gynaecology. He contributed to the development of effective antibiotic strategies for treatment of community acquired pneumonia in India and developing countries. He demonstrated the beneficial effect of inhaled corticosteroids and magnesium infusion in acute severe asthma. He has shown that simply elevating blood pressure to upper range of normal (to achieve an optimal cerebral perfusion pressure) can halve the mortality of unconscious children with central nervous system infections.
Prof Singhi has been on the editorial Board of prestigious international and national journals and an expert member for various academic committees. He has helped create curricula in PICU training and guidelines for management of sepsis, tropical fevers, and fluid therapy in critically ill children.
Prof Singhi was the President of World Federation of Pediatric Intensive and Critical Care Societies (WFPICCS) until June 2016. He did his MBBS from Jodhpur, Rajasthan University (Gold Medalist), and MD from All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi. He served as faculty at JLN Medical College, Ajmer, and University of West Indies, Kingston. He superannuated in June 2015, from Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh after serving there for more than 30 years.