• Camp 2011 - Medical team from United Kingdom see 8000 patients in a poverty stricken part of India
A 30 man team which included 15 doctors and 5 audiologists, who went to a small village in the state of Punjab, India to offer free medical treatment and help to the very poor who require medical attention has just returned from a camp. The camp ran from 25 to 27 March 2011. Based at a school in the village of Phillaur in the Punjab state of India the team of saw and treated over 8000 patients over a 3 day period, working up to 12 hours a day. Patients were triaged, and sent to the most appropriate clinician. Investigations such as blood tests, x-ray, scanning were undertaken as appropriate, leading to a diagnosis. On-going monitoring and investigations, have been arranged at the Sant Sarwan Dass charitable hospital, a 200 bed hospital belonging to one of the partner charities. All care was provided free of charge. 40 teachers from the school, and 40 local volunteers, helped administer the camp, ensuring good patient flow. Treatment was provided for as many deprived people as possible, most of whom would not be able to afford any medical care.
A UK registered charity, “Slumdoctor Project”, partnered up with 2 Indian Charities (Baba Braham Dass Charitable Trust and Sant Sarwan Dass Charitable Trust). The collaborative group advertised the clinic, which is locally called a “Camp”, using banners, local radio and TV. The camp was well publicised and supported by the Indian media. The camp was shown on “doordarshan TV news” the Indian equivalent of local BBC news, daily. The camp was inaugurated by Mr SR Laddar, Chief Commisioner of Punjab, who commended the team for their efforts. The local MP and councillor and head of police were also at the inauguration.
Dr. Vijay Bangar, Consultant Diabeteologist, one of the organisers of the camp and Director of Slumdoctor Project said “ thousands of people travelled on foot up to 100km to our medical camp to be seen. This ranged from children to the very elderly. Nurses and translators from the UK and India, were helping. Our remit was to see every person that came through our doors. No one was turned away. We saw some very poorly patients, some of whom required urgent hospital treatments. We purchased drugs locally and dispensed them as required. We arranged for operations to be carried out at a local charity hospital. We were overwhelmed by the love and respect from these people some of whom had nothing, but were grateful for the help we gave them.”
Approximately 8000 patients seen in 3 days.
300 Eye operations organised.
300 Hearing aids fitted
50 general medical and gynae operations.
10 Hip and Knee operations.
1 Neurosurgical case
Dr Bangar, a Consultant Diabetologist, who has now been running the camp for 7 years, said “ I am very grateful to all the volunteers who gave up their valuable time, and spent a considerable amount of money travelling to India, and paying for their own accommodation. I am also grateful to all of the volunteers in India, and the Indian charities involved, without whose input the camp would not have been possible. Personally, over the years, I have learnt a lot from doing these camps. You see patients with a complete spectrum of disease, from conditions that can be treated costing pennies, with life changing results. There are also complex conditions, requiring much investigation to diagnose. I remember seeing a very sick little boy who was malnourished and underweight with a rare blood disorder that had taken the lives of his 2 elder siblings. His younger sister was also afflicted with the same condition but their parents could not afford for treatment. We managed to secure hospital admission for both these siblings and hope they have a chance of survival. We can make life changing interventions. Helping others and making a difference I find very humbling and rewarding. One thing it definitely does, it makes me grateful for health care we have in the UK.”
The Camps originally started off small, and have doubled in size every year.
The charity organises fund raising events all year round. At the moment, a camp is held once a year.
The next camp is planned from Friday 23 to Sunday 25 of March 2012.