Sahyadri Hospitals, along with Women and Child Development Department of the Maharashtra government and Jivhala Apang Panchkroshi Sanstha, Satara organized a free health education workshop exclusively for the members of Anganwadi Sevika. The workshop, held on Sunday, 23rd April, 2017, was conducted at Garware College Auditorium with an aim to spread awareness about the various ailments that commonly affect women today.
Over 300 Anganwadi Sevikas attended the program along with various super-specialty doctors. Anganwadi Sevikas are known for their social work, especially in rural areas of Maharashtra. They are part of the Indian public health system and provide supplementary nutrition, non-formal pre-school education, nutrition and health education, immunization and health check-ups.
The doctors from Sahyadri Hospitals including Gynaecologic Oncologist Dr. Tanushree Jain, Epilepsy Surgeon Dr. Amit Dhakoji, Cardiologist Dr. Priya Palimkar, Paediatric Cardiologist Dr. Pankaj Sugaonkar & IVF Specialist Dr. Supriya Puranik spoke at the sessions during the workshop. They spoke about a range of topics across the fields of epilepsy, paediatric & adult cardiology, cancer in women (gynaecologic oncology) and Woman’s health & infertility. The workshop also saw the presence of Dr. Charudutt Apte, Chairman, Sahyadri Hospitals and senior officials from Women & Child Development, Maharashtra.
Addressing the audience, Dr. Charudutt Apte, Chairman, Sahyadri Hospitals stressed on the importance of the health of Anganwadi members, “Anganwadi plays a very important role in the health & social welfare of rural population of Maharashtra especially, of women & children. Therefore, it is important for you to take care of your own health as well so that importance of good health and early screening of diseases reaches to grass root level.”
Ms. Anita Kale, founder of Kale, Jivhala Apang Panchkroshi Sanstha remarked “Usually Anganwadi Sevikas are not ready to take any type of preventive health checkup. After attending this session, I am sure, many Anganwadi Sevikas will get themselves checked at least once a year, and also spread information on importance of regular health checks amongst rural folk.”
Ms. Naina Patil, Asst. Project Coordinator, Women & Child Development, Maharashtra, was also present during the program, and said “Anganwadisevikas work at a very grass root level in rural areas. Each sevika reaches to about 2000 people. There are many patients who do not realise that they require specific treatments. The health education imparted by Sahyadri Hospitals though this programme, will not only benefit the anganwadi sevikas, but also reach to each 2000 people connected with each Anganwadi sevika.”
Dr. Supriya Puranik, IVF Specialist, Sahyadri Hospitals, speaking to the Anganwadi sevikas about infertility in women, said, “Coming from different backgrounds, your role in educating rural household is very challenging, yet important. Usually infertility is a taboo in our society and often only women are blamed. Actually it’s very important to create awareness in people that in nearly 50% cases, infertility is due to medical issues concerning men.”
Dr. Priya Palimkar, Cardiologist, Sahyadri Hospitals guided Anganwadi sevikas with preventive tips in heart diseases, while epilepsy surgeon Dr. Amit Dhakoji explained simple procedures which can be administered if one encounters an epileptic patient. Dr. Dhakoji emphasized the importance of prompt medical attention in epileptic cases, which can help initiate necessary evaluation and further treatment, if required.
Mr. Mahindra Wasnik, Project Coordinator, Women & Child Development, Maharashtra also praised this social initiative by Sahyadri Hospitals, and wished them to continue such endeavors in future.
Sahyadri Hospitals has come together with an NGO – Samavedana, specifically to provide Free Cancer Health checkups for women from low socio economic strata. The checkup will include free consultation with a Gynaecologist & a Gynaecologic oncologist and tests such as Pap smear,Sonography and Mammography. Coupons for this Free Cancer screening were distributed during the program. To enroll under this program one may contact Samavedana on 9673338198.
With the motto to make healthcare accessible to all, Sahyadri Hospitals has also become part of the Rajeev Gandhi Jeevandayi Yojana and provide free health treatments for the needy patients eligible under this scheme. These treatments will includes procedures for epilepsy, cancer in women, heart diseases in children & adults for underprivileged patients. With 9 hospitals in Maharashtra, Sahyadri is the largest chain of hospitals in the state. Equipped with state – of – the – art tertiary & quaternary care, the chain has a capacity of 900 beds which are manned by 1100 clinicians and 2300 supporting staff. Since its inception, Sahyadri Hospitals has touched over 50 Lakhs lives.
Remarks from other Dignitaries and Doctors present:
Dr. Tanushree Jain, Gynaecologic Oncologist, Sahyadri Hospitals, speaking about cancer diagnoses, said “Women are often unaware of the signs and symptoms associated with these cancers and are not diagnosed until it is too late. It is vital not to ignore the early indicators of cancer. Hence, regular screening tests & early consultation with Gynecologic Oncologist – for warning signs, is very important”
Dr. Pankaj Sugaonkar, Paediatric Cardiologist, Sahyadri Hospitals said, “Every year, 1.5 lakh infants are born in India with congenital heart disease. Out of these, around 78,000 infants die every year because of inadequate health care facilities in the country. With the government initiatives such as Rajeev Gandhi Jeevandayi Yojana, cardiology procedures become more accessible to an increased percentage of the population.”