With the release of our one-year report on 30th September we are enthused to fulfil our plans for the foundation in the years to come. The plans, some of which had been started in the previous year will continue and will mature as time passes.
Digital Health: In keeping with the theme of the World Heart Day 2021 “To harness the power of digital health in improving the management of cardio vascular diseases”, our activities will start with the initiation of a Telecardiology unit at Machil on 15th of October 2021 in Dudi at Machil, district Kupwara. This place is about 150 kms from Srinagar and gets cut off from the valley during the winter months because of heavy snowfall. Its population is around 15,000 and is settled in several villages, Machhal, Pushwari, Dabpal, Mishri Bahik, Katwar and T-Shunt. In addition, there are 1500 armed forces personnel, who are guarding the line of control.
The equipment which is capable of recording ECG, doing on the spot important diagnostic blood tests including the bio markers and generating a report for a patient with the help of trained health care workers. These reports are immediately sent to a consultant at a remote location. The person can communicate to the patient and advice the treatment. Machine has most of the essential first aid drugs available at the click of a button. Patients needing hospitalization for specialized care are ferried in a customized ambulance. The building also has treatment facilities for a first aid including a few beds. The cost of the equipment and the ambulance has been borne by Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), from its corporate social responsibility fund. The unit has been placed in a spacious building named after Late Major Sahai who was martyred in one of the encounters many years ago. It has been built by the Rastriya Rifles division of the Machil sector. The inauguration and launch are coinciding with the annual “Machil Mela” a very popular sporting event on 15th October. CEO of Indian Oil Corporation Mr S M Vaidya, along with senior officers and Mr Asad Pathan, former CEO of the Indian Oil also one of the patrons of Gauri Kaul Foundation will be launching it.
A similar unit is being set up in Jammu at the Jagati migrant township near Nagrota in Jammu district. This would be launched later this year and will be handled by Helpline Humanity a Jammu based NGO formed by displaced students who had to migrate from Kashmir Valley in 1990’s.
Academics and Research: We are in the process of setting up an Academics and research department in our office at Khan colony, Chanapora. The department will act as a site management organization for other likeminded health care professionals. The department will be registered with the drug controller general’s office with an Ethics Committee as per the Indian Council of Medical Research guidelines. The plan is to start multi centric investigator initiated and industry sponsored clinical trials. In this regard we have submitted a proposal of collaboration with the Jawahar Lal Nehru Memorial hospital, Rainawari, which is a National Board of Examinations accredited hospital with ongoing DNB programs.
Commissioning a multi-speciality OPD in Hawal, District Pulwama: This village which used to be a predominantly Kashmiri Pundit village before 1990 on the Mughal Road has a large catchment area extending from Pulwama, Shopian and Kulgam. This OPD will be a state of art centre catering to most specialities. Doctors of different specialities would be chosen from the district itself. The OPD will be equipped with diagnostic equipment’s including ECG, Ultrasound, echocardiography, treadmill testing, long term ECG monitoring, digital X Ray facility along with Blood bio chemistry and other relevant investigations. Patients needing urgent admissions would be referred to the nearby very well-established Community Medical Centre (CHC) in Rajpora . Dr Javed Ahmad Bhat the BMO is its current administrative head. We already have an existing collaboration with this CHC.
The Hawal centre will be named “Prasad Joo Khan memorial Health Centre” after one of the most well-known and respected personalities of this village of early 1900’s. It should be operational by the year end.
NO Heart Attack Mission: With the increasing incidence of heart attacks reported and seen in the valley in the recent years, a large number of people especially a younger population are getting affected. Our group has decided to start this mission and work towards achieving it with a time line of 2025. The program is to make people of the various district of the UT aware of the modifiable risk factors, which explain 90% of all the heart attacks. These are; high bad cholesterol, Smoking, High BP, diabetes, obesity, psycho social stress, Poor intake of fruits and vegetables and lack of exercise. This would be done through talks by visiting them, through print and electronic media including the radio broadcasts. For this we have been seeking partnerships with the local administration, NGO’s, various likeminded social media groups, medical and nursing colleges and the media. An important component of this program is to optimize the BP, sugar, cholesterol and triglyceride control in patients already on treatment with these problems, singly or in combination. This exercise we have been involved with since the inception of GHHP in September 2020. We believe that a reduction of heart attacks by even one thirds is going to make a significant dent. Besides this our mission is also to spread the awareness about the clinical picture of patients with a heart attack so that they go to the treatment facilities as early as possible to minimize the chance of dying.
HEART SCREENING PROGRAM: In this program various preventive check-up schemes are offered to adults to find out their risk of getting heart problems. It consists of a complete check-up, including measurement of BP, Body mass index, ECG, Exercise ECG using a treadmill, echocardiography, glycated haemoglobin, Blood sugar, Lipid profile, thyroid functions besides routine blood chemistry and examination by a cardiologist. At the end of it all the measures to prevent a heart attack, stroke and heart failure are explained to the person including a prescription for drugs if needed. This evaluation will be provided at the Gauri Heart Centre, Chanapora, Srinagar at a nominal charge.
Tail Piece: The plans and programs of the GHHP needs the active cooperation of several stake holders: The administration, the health care workers, NGO’s, the print and electronic media and of course the people of Jammu and Kashmir for whom it is meant.
Prof Upendra Kaul Founder Director Gauri Kaul foundation, Recipient of Dr B C Roy Award and Padma Shri