Iftikher Mahmood, MD, FAAP
Dr. Iftikher Mahmood was born in the seaside town of Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. He completed his high school and college education in the nearby town of Chittagong and graduated from Chittagong Medical College, University of Chittagong in 1987. After a short period of training at a local mother and children’s hospital in Bangladesh, Dr. Mahmood moved to the US for higher education. Subsequently, he completed his Pediatric Residency from Brooklyn Hospital, New York and obtained fellowship training in Pediatric Endocrinology in New York Hospital – Cornell University Medical College.
Subsequently, In 1996 Dr. Mahmood moved to Florida and established a successful pediatric practice in Miami which to date serves a large population in North Miami.
During his early days of medical education, Dr. Mahmood felt that there was tremendous unnecessary suffering being endured by the poor and sick mothers and children in rural areas of Bangladesh. So, he decided to build charitable hospitals and clinics to help them.
In May 1999 Dr. Mahmood established HOPE Foundation for Women & Children of Bangladesh as a charitable organization in the State of Florida, USA. The mission of HOPE Foundation is to provide healthcare to the poor and needy mothers and children in Bangladesh. He decided to establish a charitable hospital in his home town of Cox’s Bazar to provide medical care to the most neglected people in the community.
In December of 1999, the outpatient clinic was opened in a rented room with one doctor providing medical care to the poor people of the area. The outpatient clinic ran successfully for 5 years during which time over 60,000 patient visits were made.
Meanwhile, Dr. Mahmood and the Board of the HOPE Foundation began fundraising among friends, colleagues and the expatriate Bangladeshi community in America to build a fully functioning hospital that could provide more services to the poor. During 2004 a series of fundraising events helped raise money to build HOPE Hospital, a 40-bed hospital in a rural area just outside Cox’s Bazar. The hospital was inaugurated in April 2005.
This hospital provides much-needed service to the community at the nominal expense and free to those who cannot afford to pay. In later years, eight additional satellite clinics and birth centers were established in nearby rural villages to better serve those who cannot afford to travel to the hospital for varying reasons, as well as refer patients with more complicated and severe cases to the hospital where they can receive the appropriate treatment they need.
Since the Rohingya refugee influx in Bangladesh in August of 2017, HOPE Foundation took a major leap forward, joined hands and collaborated with many national and international organizations. HOPE Foundation set up HOPE Field Hospital for Women only hospital that focuses on maternal care. In addition, HOPE Foundation set up 9 other centers for sexual and reproductive health. HOPE Foundation also established one of the largest patient referral transportation networks and emergency response teams in the refugee camps. HOPE Foundation currently treats over 200,000 people per year.
Under Dr. Mahmood’s leadership, HOPE Foundation has done some pioneering works in southern Bangladesh and established the most successful midwifery and fistula repair program in the country. Dr. Mahmood has since received many awards, been honored to speak in many notable places, including Harvard University and the United Nations Commission on Status of Women.
Dr. Mahmood lives in Cooper City, Florida with his wife and three children.