Pediatric Surgical Treatment@ Balmitra
High-quality and timely pediatric surgical treatment is provided to children of rural background in the following ways;
1) Regular weekly Pediatric surgical treatment project: This is a continuous all-year-round project, where 2-3 pediatric surgeries are conducted per week throughout the year and thus we manage to complete about 100 surgeries in this way.
2) Annual Pediatric Surgical Treatment Mission: Held once every year, a mammoth team comprising medical professionals from Balmitra and from various medical centers in USA and other countries get together for an intense 1-week period of surgical treatment during which about 100 pediatric surgeries are completed at a hospital partner.
Current State of Pediatric Healthcare in India:
Despite best intentions of the central and state government, there are large numbers of children requiring surgical treatment on the waitlist of each taluka/rural health centre in each district of India. While private hospitals at nearest city can treat these patients, the costs associated with private surgical treatment are beyond the reach of the needy folks from these rural places. As a result, child patients & their emotionally battered parents/relatives have no choice, but to wait to avail of free/subsidized surgical treatment at the Government District Hospital for months on end.
Where does Balmitra fit in?
This is where Balmitra Foundation comes in and partners with the District level healthcare machinery with requisite permissions from the District Civil Surgeon in order to screen and surgically treat these child patients thereby providing relief to the patient & family while simultaneously lessening the burden on the government healthcare system.
How does it actually work?
Balmitra Foundation conducts screening drives at various rural/taluka places of the following district/state;
1) Nagpur District, Maharashtra state in alliance with School Health Program - Govt. of Maharashtra
2) Chandrapur District, Maharashtra state in alliance with School Health Program - Govt. of Maharashtra
3) Satna District, Madhya Pradesh in alliance with MP Birla Hospital, managed by Dr. Sanjay Maheshwari
4) Gondia District, Madhya Pradesh in alliance with DISHA foundation run by Dr. Debhashish Chatterji and group.
(Please note that walk-in patients also arrive at our hospital from far and wide through word of mouth and they are not turned away!)
In each screening drive, children are examined for various ailments which can be surgically treated. Such children are registered and a surgical plan is immediately noted for future reference. Balmitra then provides surgical treatment to these registered children.
Some Frequently asked questions and their answers:
Q1: What is the cost if any to the patient's family for availing of surgical treatment at Balmitra?
Ans: While we would love to provide completely free services, it is not possible given our private & limited source of funding. Also we do not believe that providing free services is a wise work model to follow. Hence we have tried to ensure that each patient family pays for ONLY the medicines/ surgical consumables used during the surgery. This works out to a very small fraction of the overall market costs of that surgery. Please note everything else is free - including the surgery, hospital stay, post-operative care/consultation, medicines, food, accomodation, etc.
Q2: What kind of surgeries and ailments are handled at Balmitra?
Ans: Balmitra is currently geared up to tackle diverse ailments/conditions involving surgeons from various specialities such as Urology, Plastic, Orthopedics, Ophthalmic, Neuro, Spine, Thoracic region(Oesophageal replacement), HNF (Head/Neck/Face ), etc. It does not perform cardiac/heart related procedures as yet. The surgeries at Balmitra are classified from Level 1 (routine surgeries such as Hernia, etc.) to Level 4 (Oesophageal replacement procedures) depending on the complexity of each case.
Q3: Does Balmitra use generic, low-cost, medicines and consumables during surgery to lower its costs?
Ans: No. Balmitra uses standardized products which are used by most private hospitals, such as Johnson and Johnson suture material, Betadine scrub, Neosporin ointment, JMS IV sets, etc. Balmitra achieves low cost per operation because the surgeon is on its panel and therefore surgeon fees, hospital charges, etc. are completely waived off thus ensuring high quality surgery at a fraction of the costs incurred in a typical private hospital.
Q4: What are the qualifications of surgeons, medical team which conducts these surgeries?
Ans: The surgeons are all well qualified and known in their respective specialities and are respected for their work. The medical team which assists during the operations is well versed with the surgeons and provides optimal working support.
Q5: What kind of post-operative support can patients expect from Balmitra?
Ans: Balmitra provides the same high quality - high engagement post-operative to each child as is available in a private hospital. We take appropriate measures to ensure that patient and family are well aware of post-operative follow-up to ensure optimal operative outcome.
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