Healthcare is a noble mission - APJ Abdul Kalam

I am delighted to participate in the inauguration of the Vedanta Hospital at Azamgarh which is intended to provide access to quality healthcare to over 26 million citizens.

What I will be remembered for?

I would like to ask you, what would you like to be remembered for? You have to evolve yourself and shape your life. You should write it on a page. That page may be a very important page in the book of human history.And you will be remembered for creating that one page in the history of the nation - whether that page is the page of invention of a new medicine, the page of innovation in diagnostics, or the page of discovery of anti-malarial vaccine, or the page of providing healthcare in the rural sector, or page of societal change or a page of removing the poverty.

Address at the Inauguration of the Vedanta Hospital

I am delighted to participate in the inauguration of the Vedanta Hospital at Azamgarh which is intended to provide access to quality healthcare to over 26 million citizens living in the adjoining districts and portions of Mau, Balia, Ghazipur, Ambedkar Nagar, Jaunpur and Gorakhpur. I congratulate Vedanta Hospital for creating this super-specialty hospital having neurology, cardiology, nephrology, urology and gastroenterology disciplines. I am happy that 20% of beds are reserved for providing treatment for the free of cost to members of economically weaker sections of the society. The conduct of research for identifying the methods to deal with iodine deficiency of the region and the related preventive healthcare intervention can definitely go a long way in mainstreaming the citizens of this region in the growth path of entire Uattar Pradesh. My greetings to all of you. Friends, when i am with you, i would like to share few thoughts on the topic Healthcare is the noble mission.

Reaching the Un-reached

When I see this hospital, I am reminded of, how a MBBS doctor has put all his dreams in mainstreaming the tribal citizens of Karnataka for the last 25 years through Vivekananda Girijana Kalyan Kendra (VGKK), at BR Hills. When I visited BR Hills in 1998 and subsequently in 2006, I could see substantial new developments in that area. I could see that "New Tribal Hospital", Roads and education environment and above all the earning capacity of the tribal citizens have been increased with the technology resource centre as a base. Dr. H. Sudarshan, is the inspiring architect of this societal transformation.
Dr. Sudarshan's father died in a village without any medical help when he was just twelve. This event followed by his reading the biography of Dr. Albert Schweitzer who worked in Africa motivated Dr. Sudarshan to take up medical profession and work in tribal areas in India. Dr. Sudarshan derives his philosophy of work from Swami Vivekananda's teachings which states "they alone live who live for others, rest are more dead than alive.
Dr. Sudarshan starts his day at 4.30 am in the morning with Yoga, meditation and prayer with tribal school children. After his breakfast at 7.30 am, he attends to administrative work for an hour. From 9 am to 1pm, he goes around the ward and sees the patients individually. He has lunch with the tribal students between 1 and 2 pm in the afternoon. Later till 7 pm, he is busy in the clinic where he conducts minor surgeries and visits tribal complex. Later, he performs administrative work for an hour and half and has dinner with the tribal students. He devotes one hour for study between 9 and 10 pm, so that he gets updated information about medical systems. He spends large part of his time in Clinical Diagnosis, Laboratory diagnosis and treatment, in addition to Supervising, Monitoring, teaching and carrying out research along with his team members.
Dr. Sudarshan pays particular attention to the special problems of the tribals such as Snake bite cases, Mauling by bears, Pneumonia, Tuberculosis and Acute Respiratory Infections. The Soliga tribal people suffer from Sickle Cell Anemia and Dr. Sudarshan has developed a low cost electrophoresis machine for diagnosing the disease. He has also built the healthcare system on the strengths of traditional knowledge available in the tribal areas. The secret of his service is that he is empowering the people to manage their own health through the provision of knowledge. He has trained tribal girls as Auxiliary Nurse & Midwife (ANM) and posted them in the Tribal Sub-centers. These nurses undergo 18 months course. Thus the rural area is self-sufficient in nursing resource. He has also developed low cost management system for Epilepsy in the Primary Healthcare Centre (PHC). He has introduced Dental Healthcare and Cancer Control in the PHC. He is providing quality healthcare to the people by the introduction of low premium health insurance for all the people living below poverty line. He suggests that medical colleges should teach their students to develop sensitivity to the suffering of the patients. They also need to modify the treatment approach for the poor who cannot afford costly treatment. The aim of the medical education should be to facilitate application of medical technology for providing best care to the poor at the most affordable cost. Dr. Sudarshan says the greatest joy, he experienced was when he resuscitated a patient whose lungs and heart had stopped and when he sees the smile on the face of poor patients who come to the hospital with blindness (cataract in both eyes) and walk out with full vision after the cataract surgery. Country needs thousands of Dr. Sudarshans for providing healthcare to our rural citizens.
Similarly, working in a multi-specialty Vedanta hospital in a rural environment became the dream of Dr Shishir Jaiswal whose father succumbed to head-injury at Dohri Ghat, 40 kms from here due to non-availability of medical facilities. I am sure, many of you will emulate Dr. Sudarshan and Dr Jaiswal in this noble mission.
Now I would like to share with you, how a dedicated ophthalmologist transformed his vision into action and creates state of the art facility for eye care in Tamilnadu.

Lead Kindly Light

I knew Late Dr. Venkatasamy for over three decades. He is known for his silent contribution and bringing light to thousands of people. All his life, he has worked for total elimination of avoidable blindness. He has brought with the Aravind Eye Hospital, the best of technology and management. He has established a network of Aravind Hospitals and also the mobile clinics. He has created many leaders in the field, who are spread in various parts of the world. Whichever eye hospital I visited in India, I met a number of people, who had been trained by Dr. Venkatasamy's institutions. It was amazing to see how even in his eighties he was radiating enthusiasm and perseverance for realizing his vision.
Aravind Eye Hospital has been focusing on the Community Ophthalmology. Dr Venkatswamy championed the community ophthalmology service in Tamilnadu and surrounding region. This was at a time when there was tremendous amount of cataract back log, and there were not enough specialists. Using a systematic approach to mass screening and surgery he infused both science and discipline to mass surgical eye camp. The mass movement for treatment of cataract shifted from improvised operating rooms to hospital operating room facilities. Aravind has successfully integrated their core competence of community ophthalmology with modern medical treatment and research.
The Aravind has a principle that the hospital must provide services to reach rich and poor alike, yet the eye care facility must be financially self-supporting. The entire Aravind Eye care system is conducting on an average 800 eye surgeries per day and annually treat over 2.5 million patients. They are providing for every 30 paid patients, free treatment for 70 patients who cannot afford. This principle is achieved through high quality, large volume care and a well-organized system.
Aravind has grown into five hospitals with nearly 3,600 beds and 26 vision centres spread in different parts of Tamilnadu particularly in rural areas. The important aspect of Aravind system is that the productivity per ophthalmic specialists is 5 times that of national productivity. The world has recognized Aravind's contribution. I am sure, many of you will emulate this model of treatment, care and research.

What can I give mission

Since, you are all in a noble mission of healthcare, I would like to talk about a donor of vital organ to a needy patient.
Dear young friends, last Sunday I had a unique visitor Rev Fr Davis Chiramel from Perincherry, Kerala. He requested me to inaugurate the Federation of Kidney donors. At that time, one of his friends gave a book "The Imprints of Love" written by Fr Davis Chiramel. From the book, I learnt, how Fr Davis Chiramel donated one of his own kidney to an electrician Shri Gopinathan.
I asked the Priest Fr Davis Chiramel, what went through his mind when he donated his kidney. He said only four words, it is God?s Wish. Dear young friends, can you see, how a man has generiously donated one important organ of his body and extended the life of Shri Gopinathan. Can there be a greater mission than "what can I give" practiced by Fr Davis Chiramel.
I am happy that 20% of beds are reserved for providing treatment for the free of cost to members of economically weaker sections of the society.
My greetings to all of you. Friends, when i am with you, i would like to share few thoughts on the topic Healthcare is the noble mission.
Working in a multi-specialty Vedanta hospital in a rural environment became the dream of Dr Shishir Jaiswal whose father succumbed to head-injury at Dohri Ghat, 40 kms from here due to non-availability of medical facilities. I am sure, many of you will emulate Dr. Sudarshan and Dr Jaiswal in this noble mission.
I would like to ask you, what would you like to be remembered for? You have to evolve yourself and shape your life. You should write it on a page. That page may be a very important page in the book of human history. And you will be remembered for creating that one page in the history of the nation - whether that page is the page of invention of a new medicine, the page of innovation in diagnostics, or the page of discovery of anti-malarial vaccine, or the page of providing healthcare in the rural sector, or page of societal change or a page of removing the poverty.
The conduct of research for identifying the methods to deal with iodine deficiency of the region and the related preventive healthcare intervention can definitely go a long way in mainstreaming the citizens of this region in the growth path of entire Uattar Pradesh.
Vedanta Hospitals provides world-class medical facilities, state-of-the-art medical equipment and well-qualified and trained personnel and quality medical care at affordable rates to all those who come in for treatment.

Conclusion: what I will be remembered for?

Finally, I would like to ask you, what would you like to be remembered for? You have to evolve yourself and shape your life. You should write it on a page. That page may be a very important page in the book of human history. And you will be remembered for creating that one page in the history of the nation - whether that page is the page of invention of a new medicine, the page of innovation in diagnostics, or the page of discovery of anti-malarial vaccine, or the page of providing healthcare in the rural sector, or page of societal change or a page of removing the poverty.