Priya Khanna, MD
April 13, 2020
Family of 5 doctors loses both father and daughter to coronavirus
By Brianna Kudisch | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com
A father and a daughter, both of whom were doctors, died from COVID-19 and were honored by Gov. Phil Murphy at Thursday's daily briefing for their contributions.
Dr. Satyender Dev Khanna and his daughter Dr. Priya Khanna were remembered by Murphy at the daily briefing as selfless healthcare heroes, who dedicated their lives to helping others. They leave behind the elder Khanna's wife and two daughters. All three are also physicians.
"The dad, Dr. Satyender Khanna, was a surgeon who served both on staff and as the head of surgical departments for multiple hospitals across our state for literally decades and he passed at Clara Maass Medical Center, where he had worked for more than 35 years," Murphy said.
Khanna was a pioneering doctor, as one of the first surgeons to perform laparoscopic surgery in the state, Murphy said. He was passionate about bicycling and often biked along the Jersey Shore. He's being remembered by colleagues as "a caring and gentle physician," Murphy said.
His daughter, Dr. Priya Khanna, also died at Clara Maass in Belleville, where she worked. She was double board certified in both internal medicine and nephrology, and completed all of her medical training in New Jersey.
Priya was also chief of residents at Union Hospital, now part of RWJBarnabas Health, and completed her fellowship in nephrology in South Jersey with the Cooper Health System. She was also medical director at two dialysis centers in Essex County and was a teaching attending, Murphy said, "taking pride in the next generation of doctors."
"And it should be noted that the ICU physician who cared for her was trained and taught by her as well," he said. "Priya will be remembered as a caring and selfless person who put others first, and even while in the hospital fighting her own battles, she continued to check up on her mom and dad and her family."
Priya loved swimming, spending time at the Shore and beaches, and traveling, Murphy said.
The Khannas leave behind a grieving wife and mother, Dr. Kamlesh Khanna, who is a pediatrician herself, Murphy said.
They also leave behind Satyender Dev Khanna's two daughters, who were Priya's sisters: Dr. Sughanda Khanna, an emergency medicine physician and Dr. Anisha Khanna, a pediatrician, and four of Satyender Dev Khanna's grandchildren, or in Priya's case, her three nieces and a nephew, Murphy said.
"This is a family, by the way, dedicated to health and medicine," he said at the briefing. "Our words cannot amply express our condolence, nor am I sure can they express the pain that the Khanna family is feeling. But I hope the fact that our entire state mourns with them is some small comfort. And we mourn everyone that we have lost. We commit in their memory to saving as many lives as we can."
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