Division of Infectious Diseases

Welcoming our new ID fellows – Focus on Dr. Karnatak

Content provided by Dr. Rajendra Karnatak, UNMC ID fellow

We are thrilled to welcome Dr. Karnatak as a new fellow in our Infectious Diseases program! Read on to learn a little more about him…

Tell us about the position you are starting?
I am starting infectious diseases fellowship at UNMC. I plan to do two years of specialization in infectious diseases followed by one year in critical care medicine.
Tell us about your background? 
I  finished medical school from the Himalayan Institute of Medical Sciences in India and further training in cardiac critical care at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in New Delhi. I did my Internal Medicine residency at the Brookdale University Hospital in Brooklyn, New York. Post residency I have been practicing academic internal medicine from last three and half years. 
Why UNMC?
Omaha is second home for my wife. She always wanted to come back to Omaha. I was well aware of great training environment at UNMC as my wife did part of her residency and fellowship training here at UNMC. During my fellowship interview I realized infectious disease fellowship program at UNMC is designed to create a great learning environment for fellows and help fellows to grow in their career irrespective of whatever they want to achieve.  
What about ID makes you excited?
Infectious diseases is very exciting due to its complexity. During my practice I often noticed when I needed an specialist experienced in complexity I would call ID!! Infectious disease in today’s era is incredibly important due to crisis of multi-drug resistance, growing number of immunosuppressed oncology and transplant population, international travel related infections, infection control and need for expertise in health care epidemiology. According to a recent CDC report health care infections costs around 26-33 billion annually. In 2013 “Infectious Diseases Specialty Intervention is Associated with Decreased Mortality and Lower Healthcare Costs”,  study by Steven K. Schmitt, MD and Daniel McQuillen, MD provided data when ID specialists were involved early  less patients died in the hospital and after discharge and when ID docs were involved patients had 5.1% shorter ICU stays and had fewer readmissions within 30 days discharge from the hospital. ID physicians reduced costs by estimated 6%. Infectious disease is consistently changing and unpredictable as seen by recent emergence of infections like Ebola to  MERS to bioterrorism. For me, choosing infectious disease after finishing internal medicine residency was simply right thing to do.
Tell us something about yourself UNRELATED to medicine?
Apart from medicine I enjoy spending time with my family. My wife and I both have our families back in India. We chat with our folks almost every day. We both love cooking and travel. We both grew up in northern India close to Himalayas and love mountains and lakes!!! In the future, I want own a boat and take it to lake every weekend to go fishing!! 
See more about the UNMC Infectious Diseases Fellowship here.


 

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