Dr Rama K Gugilla

Dr Rama K Gugilla: Helping control hypertension in rural India

Dr. Rama K. Gugilla is a Research Fellow at the Research and Development Division of  The George Institute for Global Health. He is also working as a Medical Fellow with George Clinical.

Dr. Guggilla has experience working as a clinician before joining the George Institute as a Research Fellow. He is currently involved in a study that seeks to identify enablers and barriers to the control of hypertension in rural India and pilot an intervention that is informed by those enablers and barriers. 

What inspires you in the work you do and why?

As a clinician, I observed that a lot of people in poor areas suffer from heart diseases and diabetes. Both my parents who come from a humble background are also diabetic and have heart disease. I was under the impression that these are rich people’s diseases. I had a lot of unanswered questions in my mind that I encountered in my clinical practice and the opportunity I got to work at the George helps me to find answers to these unanswered questions.  

Why do you enjoy working at The George Institute?

At the George, we are all kind of one family. It is a very informal and yet professional environment and this is great fun!

How long have you been working at The George Institute?

I have been at the George for seven years now. 

What is your current research focus?

I’m currently working on a study entitled “Improving the Control of Hypertension in Rural India: Overcoming barriers to diagnosis and effective treatment”. The study aims to compare the prevalence and barriers to receiving health care for people suffering from hypertension across three sites in rural India and develop a suitable intervention strategy.

Earlier this year, our team won the Grand Challenges contest organized by the George Institute for its global staff and along with my colleagues here, I have been trying to develop and test an innovative device- and platform-agnostic global community health workers training program.    

What is your professional background?

I am a doctor by training and after completing my MBBS from India, I got a scholarship to complete by post-graduate medical education. I come from a poor background and my parents could hardly afford to send me to school. I used to work in farmlands with them. With the support of an educational society that gave me a scholarship, I studied till class X and then I came out with flying colours at the National Talent Search Examination which supported the rest of my schooling as well as medical education. I won the Endeavour Scholarship that enabled me to complete my post-graduate medical education at the University of Sydney.        

To unwind at the end of the day I….

I listen to ARIA charts, US Billboard and UK Billboard on my Logitech Z-623 2.1 THX certified speakers.

My biggest achievement so far…..

My biggest achievement so far has been the appointment as an ambassador for the Australia-India scholarship programme as part of which I got an opportunity to be a part of the Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott's visit to Mumbai and New Delhi a couple of months ago.