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Harutyun Kushkyan, M.D., Ph.D. (Advisor)
Minister of Health, Republic of Armenia
Dr. Harutyun Kushkyan, Minister of Health, has been in office since June 1, 2007. He graduated from Yerevan State Medical Institute in 1980. In 1986 he founded and was Chief of the Department of Endocrine Surgery at Erebouni Hospital, Yerevan. In 1993 he successfully defended his doctorate thesis, “Correction of the heart function and immune system of several diseases of thyroid gland.” The same year he was appointed Professor of the Department of Surgery at State Medical University ?1, Yerevan. He was Chief of the Department of Endocrine Surgery at the National Institute of Health, Armenia in 2003. In 2005 he was the Head of Medical Commission of the Olympic Committee in Armenia. He was a member of the Armenian Parliament from 1995 through 1999, also serving as the Chair of the Medical Commission of the Ministry of Defense from 1995 to 1996. He established Erebouni Medical Center in 1992 and was its General Director until 2007. He also founded Nairi Medical Center in 2002 and was its General Director until 2007.
Salpy Akaragian, RN-BC, MN, FIAN (Chair of Foundation)
Salpy Akaragian is the Director of the International Nursing Center, credentialing and teaching institute. She received a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees in Nursing from UCLA School of Nursing. She has been working at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center since 1974, and has held positions from staff nurse to administration.
She was the US Partner Representative for USAID/AIHA grants from 1995-2004, directed multiple health care projects and initiated reforms in Armenia. In 2004, she established The Cochlear Implant Regional Center in Yerevan with the AIM Fund and the UCLA Medical Team. Recently, she was appointed as a volunteer consultant for Ministry of Health in the Republic of Armenia.
As the Director of the International Nursing Center she hosted visitors from over twenty different countries and coordinated education and training experiences for over two thousand international visitors. She is the founder and first president of the Armenian-American Nurses Association in California and in 1996 facilitated the formation of the Armenian Nurses Association in Armenia.
She has served on the California Board of Registered Nursing as a board member, served as a Magnet Appraiser for ANCC, and is board certified in nursing professional development. She has presented on various health related topics at National and International Conferences.
She is a member of the Nursing Honor Society, Board Member of Worldwide University Nurses Association, American Nurses Association, UCLA Alumni Association and other significant professional organizations. She has researched and published, received numerous grants and awards, appeared on television programs and featured in articles.
Garni Barkhoudarian, M.D. (President)
Dr. Barkhoudarian completed his undergraduate education at UCLA. He received his Medical Degree from the University of Michigan Medical School in 2005 and is currently a Chief Resident in Neurosurgery at UCLA. Dr. Barkhoudarian’s honors and awards include the Maud and Walter T. Parker Fund Scholarship, Edgar A. Kahn Cerebrovascular Research Fellow, 2003-2004, the Resident's Award for basic science oral presentation, MANS Conference, 2004, Outstanding Student Teaching Award (2008-2009), and The Mimi and Harold Steinberg “Caring Counts” Resident Award (2009).
Dr. Barkhoudarian is the current AIM Fund President. He is planning the upcoming Neurosurgery Medical Mission to Armenia. These will focus on providing much needed implants for patients with untreated hydrocephalus – a common and devastating neurosurgical condition. In addition, technology and protocols for the management of acute traumatic brain injury will be implemented. These projects will help establish Armenia as a regional center of excellence in the field of Neurosurgery.
Akira Ishiyama, M.D. (Vice President)
Dr. Akira Ishiyama was born in Tokyo, Japan. He received a B.S. degree in Mathematical Physics in 1983 and M.S. degree in Physics in 1986 from M.I.T. He graduated from Northwestern University School of Medicine in 1990.
Following his fellowship training, Dr. Ishiyama was appointed to the Division of Head and Neck Surgery at UCLA. His clinical and research focus is the study of hearing and balance disorders. Dr. Ishiyama has focused his clinical efforts in the division of head and neck surgery at UCLA to expend the section of otology, one of his major accomplishments is the establishing of the UCLA Cochlear Implant Program. As director of the UCLA Cochlear Program, he is proud to help hearing impaired children and adults to hear for the first time or hear again. He developed the UCLA Cochlear Implant Support Group, an important source of emotional and social support for these patients. He is also Professor of David Geffen UCLA School of Medicine in Head and Neck Division.
Arthur Shukuryan, M.D., Ph.D. (Advisor-Armenia)
Dr. Arthur K. Shukuryan is Chair of the Otorhinolaryngology Department at Yerevan State Medical University. He graduated from YSMU, with Honors, where he also completed his Residency. He completed several ENT Fellowships from 1990 through 2004 in Munich, Germany; Paris, France; and Los Angeles, California (UCLA Medical Center). In 2000 he successfully defended his doctorate thesis, “Surgical rehabilitation of patients with conductive hypoacusis” at First State Medical Institute, Moscow. He has been a Professor at YSMU since 2001. Dr. Shukuryan’s research interests include ear diseases, surgical correction of hearing, audiometry, conductive and sensoneural hearing loss, cochlear implantation, plastic surgery and endolaryngeal interventions. Currently, he is the President of the Armenian ORL Society, and a member of the French ORL Society, the International Society of Audiology and the International Pediatric ORL Society. He is the lead physician for the cochlear implant surgery project in Armenia collaborating with Dr. Akira Ishiyama and Armenian International Medical Fund.
Vigen Bakhshinyan, M.D., Ph.D (c)
Dr. Vigen Bakhshinyan was born in Yerevan in 1975. He graduated from Yerevan State Medical University of Pediatrics in 1998 and completed his Residency in 2001 in Otorhinolaryngology. He earned his Ph.D. in 2005 by defending the thesis on “The objective methods of hearing observations in the diagnosis of different types of hearing loss and in the determination of indication for cochlear implantation”under the supervision of Prof. Shukuryan (Armenia) and Prof. Tavartkiladze (Russia). Currently, he is pursuing a second Ph.D. at the National Research Center for Audiology and Hearing Rehabilitation in Moscow, Russia.