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Interview: Dr. Vinod Abraham, Community Health


In this interview with Foundation board member and Gates Venture Managing Director, Niranjan Bose, Dr. Vinod Abraham shares the Community Health department‘s work in maternal and child health and CMC’s development work in the Jawadhi Hills region.

Dr. Abraham and CHAD’s notable work includes the following:

  • The Maternal and Child Health Program – The home based card was developed early on, and this is a model that UNICEF adopted and implemented in several areas. CHAD also developed a strong referral system, in which women with risk factors in pregnancy were identified in the community by grassroot level workers and by health workers. They were then referred to the base hospital where they received care at a higher level. This system allows any patient to be referred to the tertiary level where they will receive state of the art care at a cost they can afford.
  • A Geographic Information System (GIS) – This includes injury prevention from road traffic incidents and community-based rehabilitation. 
  • Jawadhi Hills Model Village Program – Supported by the Vellore CMC Foundation, the focus is on sustainable development with the villages, as well as water and sanitation. Work has just begun on the fourth of the model villages. CHAD is also planning to open a 24 hour facility in Jawadhi Hills.
  • Vaccine Studies and Development: CMC has been involved in the early studies of several diseases and served as trial sites for several vaccines, including polio, rotavirus, and influenza B.
  • COVID-19 work: CHAD identified individuals who would be the most vulnerable to COVID-19 and distributed medicine and food that would last them 2-3 weeks. This made a tremendous difference in the community.


Dr. Vinod Joseph Abraham (Batch ’89), is professor and head of the department of Community Health at CMC.

Following his post graduate training in Community Health at CMC (1997-2000), he received further training in Public Health from Johns Hopkins. He also completed a course on the Essentials of Palliative Care to further strengthen the community based care and address an unmet need.

His areas of interest include community based care of people with disabilities, palliative care and care of the elderly. He was recipient of the I.C.M.R  Professor B C Srivastava Foundation award for his work in Community Geriatrics.