Hello members and friends of APPO Foundation to our updated website.

We created this site out of need to improve communication between the Filipino organizations in Cleveland and to friends and supporters of our organization. APPO was formed by a small group of Filipino physicians in 1974 to promote medical mission work in the Philippines, their homeland. It has slowly grown to over 300 physicians from all over Northeast Ohio. APPO hasA� returned to the Philippines yearly for over 30 years serving over 300,000 patients in that time span. We welcome seasoned and new volunteers, both physician and non-physician, to join the medical mission typically held in February for 4-5 days. Youa��ll find all of the details for the upcoming mission on this site.

APPO also wants to give back to Cleveland, Ohio where it was founded. We have physicians who volunteer at the North Coast Health Ministry, Asian Festival (2012) and Medworks. We provide scholarships to students in the Philippines interested in medical school and also to those here in Cleveland.

Since we are a charitable foundation, we are supported by membership dues, donations and fund-raising events such as Sampaguita Ball and CME typically held in May and the Charity Golf Outing in August. These events are usually well attended and a lot of fun.

For those who have supported APPO Foundation, we thank you. We hope you will find this site useful and informative. Thanks for visiting!

Jessica Strasburg MD

President, APPO, 2012

A Brief History of APPO

A group of physicians spearheaded by Dr. Felino Barnes formed the Association of Philippine Physicians in Ohio in June of 1974. The APPO became the first official state chapter of the mother organization, the Association of Philippine Physicians in America and was the host of the Third APPA National Convention held at the Holiday Inn at Randall.

As the APPO membership grew, comprehensive goals and objectives were developed to better serve the members. The “birth” of the Official APPO newsletter, later named “The Pulse,” was in 1981 and Dr. Nelin Retizos was the first editor-in-chief. The APPO has continued its Outreach Program both locally and abroad.

The APPO medical mission was the first medical mission to the Philippines by an organized Medical Society in the United States. This was the brainchild of Dr. Rosalinda de Jesus, 1980 President. The mission was held on December 1981 at San Fernando, La Union during the term of Dr. Rudy Lontoc and was chaired by Dr. Juliet So-Bosita. The medical mission has been one of the major humanitarian projects of the association from 1981 to the present. Dr. Armando Damian had chaired this project since July 1985 (with Dr. Nelin Retizos) to January 1999 (with the exception of 1988 when he was APPO President. It was chaired by Dr. Renato Bosita). The success of this endeavor is due to the continuous dedication of the mission team members and the support of the officers/members area hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, other charitable organizations and friends. The APPO adopted the St Martin de Pores Hospital in the Philippines as its sister hospital and the APPO Ward was inaugurated in July 1985 during the term of Dr. Modesto Peralta. Aid to disaster areas helps the victims of the natural disaster especially during the Mt. Pinatubo volcano eruption and Typhoon Rosing.

Locally, the APPO co-sponsors free cancer detection screening and coordinates Health Fairs with area hospitals and other organizations. APPO supports the Shelter for Battered Women, the Cleveland Health Care for the Homeless, the Lake County Free Clinic and serves meals at the St. Paul Hunger center, in partnership with the APPO Auxiliary supports. APPO also visits the sick and elderly at the Sisters of the Poor at Richmond Heights.

The APPO gives grants to deserving medical students of Filipino heritage here and abroad. The APPO has at present 262 active members. A Young Physicians Committee was created last year and there has been a an increase in the membership combined with the increase in involvement in our activities among our “Second Generation” physicians’ a�� children of our APPO members a�� and “Young Physicians” (Filipino- American physicians in training). This is quite promising and we hope to harness their energy and talent to help move the APPO forward into the next millennium.

The Founding Officers of APPO


Dr. Andres Sabio President

Dr. Manuel Rodriguez Vice President

Dr. Mario Abellera Secretary

Dr. Romeo Enriquez Treasurer


Dr. Remigio Abello
Dr. Jaime Angeles
Dr. Arturo Basa
Dr. Theodore Mabini
Dr. Morada Sabio


Dr. Celso Carandang Executive Director

Dr. Conrad Javier Press Relations Officer


  • To provide physicians and other qualified health professionals continuing medical education
  • To give grants to disadvantage and deserving individuals for the purpose of furthering their medical education
  • To organize, coordinate and conduct medical relief missions to medically underserved areas of the United States and the Philippines
  • To provide assistance to victims of natural disasters in the United States and the Philippines
  • To protect and promote the general interest and welfare of its members
  • To participate in the promotion and preservation of the Philippine Cultural Heritage

Interesting Facts

  • The APPO Constitution and By-laws was drafted by Dr. Manuel Rodriguez and ratified by the Board of Directors.
  • The APPO was incorporated in the State of Ohio and is a tax-exempt organization described in section 501(cX3) of the Internal Revenue.
  • The first Sampaguita Ball was held on May 1975 at the West 150th Marriott Inn, chaired by Dr. Romeo Enriquez.
  • The first Scientific meeting was held on June 1976 at the Bond Court Hotel and was chaired by Dr. Arturo Basa. These became a yearly event.
  • The first humanitarian project of the APPO was in July 1975 when the APPO physicians led by Dr. Manuel Rodriguez volunteered free physical examinations to more than 500 Boy Scouts at their campground in Ashtabula.
  • In the summer of 1976, APPO members led by Dr, Andres Sabio helped the Cleveland Academy of Medicine in the mass Polio immunization project at Richmond Mall in Lyndhurst.