Lifeline express in Odisha
Chhatrapur: Four-year-old Pradip's joy knew no bound as he got a new lease of life after a surgery at Lifeline Express, the "Hospital on Wheels", now providing free treatment at Chhatrapur railway station in Ganjam district.
Born with a cleft lip, Pradip from Gajapati district faced difficulty in eating and drinking, besides an ugly look.
The tribal boy now smiles with confidence after being operated upon by expert plastic surgeons in Lifeline Express.
The tale of 83-year-old Udaynath from Dura village in nearby Gopalpur area is no different. The poor man whose world had fallen silent is now jubilant as he can hear after getting a hearing aid following check up and treatment.
Like Pradip and Udaynath, hundreds of poor people from remote areas of districts like Ganjam, Gajapati, Rayagada, Kandhamal, Nayagarh, Puri and Khurda are benefited by free treatment by expert doctors. Lifeline Express which began operations here on April 18 will be stationed till May 11.
Tata Steel is hosting Lifeline Express for the second time in Ganjam district, the seventh time in Odisha and 17th time in the country, said Dr N C Mahanta, Head (Rehabilitation & Resettlement) in Tata Steel's Gopalur project.
"So far 2,661 patients have been registered and given treatment in the unique facility. On an average, 200 people are visiting Lifeline Express daily," said Tanmay Kar, Unit Head, Tata Steel Rural Development Society (TSRDS), Gopalpur.
Stating that more than 4,500 patients are likely to be benefited during the ongoing exercise, Kar said the aim was to provide free treatment with necessary surgery and medicines.
During its stay here, Lifeline Express has provided treatment to 633 patients with orthopaedic problems, 162 epilepsy cases, 849 dental cases and 46 patients requiring plastic surgery, Kar said.
At present ENT specialists are attending to patients and so far about 189 hearing aids have been provided, he said, adding that from tomorrow people with eye ailments, mainly cataract, would be provided treatment.
Prior to this, Tata Steel has hosted Lifeline Express in five locations in Odisha — Gopalpur, Daitari, Jajpur Road, Meramundali and Joda. The initiative is stated to have come to the aid of over 24,000 differently-abled persons in Odisha.
Lifeline Express, one of the major innovations in the history of health care, is equipped with two modern operation theatres.