Aiming to provide quality cancer care
at affordable cost, the Odisha
government on Sunday entered into a pact with Tata Trusts
in Mumbai to establish a state-of-the-art Cancer Treatment
& Research Hospital in Bhubaneswar.
A memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed to this effect in the presence of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and Tata Trusts
chairman Ratan Tata.
The Centre would be benchmarked with the iconic Tata Memorial Hospital
in Mumbai. The Odisha
government will facilitate the setting up of the hospital by providing 25 acres land free of cost.
“The state government has been taking pro-active measures towards improving cancer care
in the state including infrastructure upgradation of district hospitals, both in terms of trained doctors and staff to provide free chemotherapy in all the 30 districts of the state. The Tata Trusts
has immense expertise in the field of cancer care
and research. The comprehensive cancer care
programme in partnership with Tata Trusts
will certainly create the much-needed synergy”, the chief minister said.
Speaking at the MoU signing, Ratan Tata
said, “The state has changed enormously in last few years. Cancer is a major thrust area and the Tatas will share their knowledge in cancer care
to support the state’s efforts in high-end cancer treatment.
The comprehensive care programme, according to the MoU, will be established through a three-tier network of facilities with the Tata Trusts’ proposed Centre at Bhubaneswar and Acharya Harihar Regional Cancer Centre in Cuttack as apex centres.
The medical colleges in the state and the district hospitals will be equipped to offer diagnostics and standardised day care chemotherapy with selected district hospitals additionally offering Radiotherapy services.
This will create a state-wide cancer care
network with an objective to take treatment closest to patients.
The priorities of Odisha’s cancer care
programme will be delineated by an advisory committee chaired by the chief secretary. According to the MoU, the advisory committee will recommend a Special Programme Management Entity for executing the proposed network of cancer facilities. The project management entity will have representation from both the state government and Tata Trusts.
A corpus of Rs 8 billion has been earmarked for implementing cancer care
projects under the above initiative over the next five years. The Odisha
government’s share is pegged at Rs 5 billion while Tata Trusts
has pledged Rs 3 billion.
The state government will also fund the operational expenses of the different facilities installed under the programme and fully sponsor free treatment for the poor and needy patients.
Earlier, the state government has wrested the initiative in offering free cancer care
Manpower and infrastructure at the district headquarter hospitals are being upgraded to provide free chemotherapy in all the 30 districts. Free cancer service includes facilities for screening and early detection of malignant tumours.