Amrita Hospital in Kochi on Sunday announced a commitment of Rs 65 crore in charitable care over the next one year, as part of its silver jubilee celebrations.
According to the hospital’s press statement, the healthcare institution, which incurs an expenditure of Rs 40 crore every year for free treatment of needy patients, has committed an additional Rs 25 crore this year to the cause to mark the 25 years of its founding in 1998.
A range of medical services will be offered within this budget, including paediatric cardiology, renal transplant, knee replacement, bone marrow transplant, paediatric liver transplant and free fibrous scan. Amrita hospital would also be conducting 240 free deliveries per month over the next one year as part of the celebrations, the hospital announced.
Since its establishment in 1998, Amrita Hospital has spent more than Rs 816 crore in providing free medical care to people, it claimed. Out of 1.96 crore patients treated at the hospital so far, 59 lakh patients were given either free or subsidized treatment.
On Sunday, the Silver Jubilee celebrations began with a grand event attended by Minister of Home Affairs, Amit Shah; Veena George, Minister of Health and Family Welfare, Kerala; P Prasad, Minister for Agriculture, Kerala; Hibi Eden, Member of Parliament (MP) from Ernakulam; M Anilkumar, Mayor of Kochi; TJ Vinod, MLA; Swami Amritaswarupananda Puri, Vice Chairman of Mata Amritanandamayi Math; Dr Prem Nair, Group Medical Director, Amrita Hospitals and other dignitaries.
“Every time I meet Amma, I return invigorated with new energy and consciousness. Like me, four crore people have received her love and blessings in the last five decades. I am glad and honored to acknowledge her good work for entire humanity. She has made immense contribution in creating appreciation for India’s rich, spiritual culture and traditions. She has taught the art of giving to the world. Even after 50 years of serving millions of people, her humility is striking. Amma’s ashram built 1,200 houses in Gujarat after the 2001 earthquake. Those villages are locally called Amma’s villages, so much is the gratitude of the people for the help provided by her in their hour of need,” Amit Shah said during his speech on Sunday.
Shah also said that starting with mere 125 beds, Amrita Hospital in Kochi has transformed into a 1350-bed facility.
“It is now counted among the world’s best. Apart from service to the poor, where it has treated lakhs of patients for free, the hospital also has an impressive record in medical excellence and research, with several firsts to its credit such as India’s first micro blood stem cell transplantation, India’s first hospital to do the largest number of high-precision robotic liver transplants and setting up India’s first 3D printing lab,” he added.
He also said that in the last 9 years, the Indian government has taken a holistic approach to revolutionize healthcare, with the launch of initiatives like the Swatch Bharat Abhiyan, Poshan mission, mission Indra Dhanush, Ayushman Bharat and Jal Jivan mission.
“These have substantially improved people’s health. More than 60 crore poor people are today eligible for free treatment under the Ayushman Bharat scheme. Medical education infrastructure has improved substantially. In 2013-14, there were 387 medical colleges in India, compared to 648 today. The number of MBBS seats has gone up from 51,000 to 99,000, and PG seats from 31,000 to 64,000 in the same period. Also, 22 new AIIMS have been opened across the country. During the pandemic, the whole world watched in awe how the Government administered India-made vaccine to 130 crore Indians,” he added.
Shah remotely inaugurated a state-of-the-art research centre at the Amritapuri (Kollam) campus of Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham and another research facility adjacent to the Amrita Hospital in Kochi.
According to the hospital, the expansion will build upon the hospital’s existing research programs, focusing on genomics, nanotechnology, informatics, and cell biology. The two new research centres are intended to solve common man’s problems by integrating high-quality research domains and translating them into affordable products for building sustainable and resilient communities.
“I thank everyone who has led us up to this moment – 25 years of achieving the impossible. I find myself still filled with wonder at this expansive campus. Today, I feel the sacrifice and love that has gone into each brick as well as each dust particles in this campus,” Dr Prem Nair, Group Medical Director, Amrita Hospitals said in a statement.
Amrita Hospital, Kochi, was inaugurated on May 17, 1998, by the former Prime Minister, Atal Bihari Vajpayee.