Tuesday, February 7, 2023

Free palliative care for cancer patients launched in Jamshedpur


Jamshedpur, June 1:  The Suri Seva Foundation (SSF), a Michigan, US based non-profit corporation, in collaboration with Delhi based CanSupport, which provides free of charge home based palliative care to cancer patients, launched ‘Pritpal CanSupport Home Palliative Care Service’ (PCHPCS) in Jamshedpur at a very solemn function held at Centre For Excellence (CFE) on Wednesday.

This is the first of its kind ‘free of charge’ service that is going to make available, nursing and psychosocial support to those battling cancer in their respective homes. Cancer causes tremendous physical and emotional suffering not only to the patient but also their family / caregivers. In view of the rising incidence of cancer in India, this type of home care service for cancer patients is the need of the hour.

Chanakya Chaudhary, Vice-President, Corporate Services launched the palliative care service formally at Center for Excellence.

Addressing the gathering, Chanakya Chaudhary said he was very appreciative of the initiative taken by Suri Seva Foundation and the objective of CanSupport of adding ‘life to the days of patients’ battling end of life ailment. He conveyed his best wishes to the Pritpal CanSupport Home Palliative Care Services (PCHPCS) team. 

Chaudhary stated that said Tata Steel is adding more facilities at the Meherbai Tata Memorial Hospital (MTMH) to aid cancer patients avail residential facilities.

“Patients come to MTMH from different towns, all cannot afford hotels for the accommodation, it is a costly thing. Tata Steel is adding residential facilities at the hospital, the work is likely to finish by end of the financial year,” Chaudhary added.

Kulvin Suri, former chief, corporate communications, Tata Steel said that this is a first-of-its-kind free of charge service in the city that is going to make available medical, nursing, and psychosocial support to those fighting cancer and their caregivers in their homes.

Dr Ambika Rajvanshi , the CEO of CanSupport gave a brief introduction of its Palliative Care Services followed by a film showcasing CanSupport’s work over the last 25 years. “In Jamshedpur, to begin with Pritpal CanSupport Home Palliative Care Service is starting out with one home care team comprising a doctor, two nurses and a Public Relations Officer. Over time PCHPCS plans to introduce more home care teams to expand their circle of influence of care and compassion.”

 The Chairman, SSF, Harcharan Singh Suri, said: “It is a big day for all of us involved in providing door step palliative care to the cancer patients, small beginning but a long way to go.”

His message was read out at the launch of the service.  The CanSupport, Founding President, Harmala Gupta, said that since past 25 years the organisation has been taking at home care of the cancer patients.

“Regular traveling long distance is an arduous for the cancer patients, and, also expansive to the family of the patient, it is a great thing to happen if palliative care is made available at the door step,” Harmala Gupta said in her video message.

Kulvin was instrumental in pushing for the collaboration of the two leading organisations for the launch of the care service in the industrial town.

Initially, a four-member team comprising palliative care physician, Saurabh Sahay, palliative care nurse, Meera Rani Mohanty, palliative nurse counselor,  Lovely Minz, and Public Relations Officer, Rajeev Ranjan, is formed to regulate the service.

CanSupport is currently operating only in North India, and at any given point, their palliative home care teams are looking after 3000 patients concurrently.

Over time, PCHPCS plans to introduce more home care teams to expand their circle of influence of care and compassion.

In 2019, SSF funded the establishment of Palliative Care Center at MTMH, through a collaboration agreement with Sir Dorabji Tata Trust, Mumbai.

The palliative care program offered by Pritpal Palliative Care Center at MTMH is fully operational and currently offers in-patient and out-patient palliative care service  to needy patients.

Also present to mark the launch of the service was  Dr R N Sharma , Chairman MTMH, Ruchi Narendran , Dr Sujata Mitra, Director MTMH and Dr Ambika Rajvanshi , CEO CanSupport , New Delhi.

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