Sivananda Home, an inspiration to the home for the destitute:
Leprosy Cases on the rise:
TIMES NEWS NETWORK:
Hyderabad: On World Leprosy Day, to be observed in the city on January 30 and 31, activists working in the field note that there is a disturbing rise in the number of cases in the last two years in the state. According to them, the rise has been to the tune of 20 per cent.
As per government figures, 5,742 cases of leprosy were reported from April to December, 2009. As many as 600-700 cases are reported every month, which make the annual leprosy cases add up to over 8,000. Nevertheless, officials with the State Leprosy Society say there has been no significant rise in the number of cases.
However, Lepra, on NGO working with communicable diseases, states there has been a rise in the number of cases, with children accounting for most of them. Executive officer of NGO Lepra Society, Ranganadha Rao said that the large number of cases only pointed to the fact that the infection has not been eliminated. “ Children between 5 and 15 years of age make up for 15per cent of the total cases reported in the state,” he said.
Social workers say the cases are spread across the state. “ It is not concentrated in a particular area like it was in Srikakulam district a few years ago. Also, while most the poverty line, there are also those who fall in the middle and higher strata of society,” Rao said.
1958: Inspired by Swami Sivananda of Rishikesh, for the great deed of establishing leprosy colonies, for those destitute people who were isolated from the society because of the stigma, Rani Kumudini Devi started Sivananda Rehabilitation Home in 1958, for helping leprosy affected patients and rehabilitating them. Sivananda Rehabilitation Home started by rehabilitating 50-60 patients.
1976: The then Chief Minister Mr. Vengalla Rao handed over SRH the responsibility of taking care of all the Leprosy patients in the municipal corporation home for Leprosy in Hyderabad. Resulting to which SRH rehabilitated about 900 patients, for whom cottages were built, two sick wards were established with 20 beds, and a laboratory, a physiotherapy department and a footwear section were started.
1976: Training in cottage industry was started for the rehabilitated patients to earn their living. The patients were trained in weaving, candle making, basket making etc.
Association with GLRA:
1978: The Archbishop of Hyderabad, M. Arulappa, on his visit to Germany met the members of German Leprosy Relief Association (GLRA), which was funding the anti leprosy projects across the world. He suggested them to support SRH. As a result to which, Leprosy specialists visited SRH in 1978. The GLRA suggested SRH to start an outreach programme in the slums of the city where trained Leprosy workers visited house to house to check and provide treatment for the leprosy affected at their doorstep.
1978: A Safety Matches unit was established under the name ‘Chetana’.
1979: The outreach programme was started with about 20 paramedical personnel and a medical officer. Initially the government allotted about 0.5 million of population for the survey which was later increased to 1.5 million by 1987. More than 11,000 patients were detected and treated by SRH. The prevalence of the disease was 90/10,000 which was reduced to 0.6/10,000 by 2003. The programme was discontinued as SRH had reached the criteria imposed by the WHO of reduction of infection to less than 1/10,000. (Elimination)
1980: Pleased with the developments of SRH, GLRA agreed to sanction a referral hospital and also to make the services of Dr. August Beine, MD, an orthopedic surgeon.
1981: A proposal to build a water tank of 15,000 gallons was proposed. Which was agreed and a water storage tank was built in the campus or the rehabilitated patients.- 97
1981: The institution conducted a collaborative study, with the National Institution of medical Research, London on the effect of immunization with armadillo derived vaccine developed by the UNDP/World Bank/WHO Special programme. The aim of the study was to stimulate the body’s immunization against leprosy and examine the effects.
1985: The work for providing electricity to all the cottages was started. .
1985: The GLRA established a 200 bedded referral hospital in the campus and till date the hospital has been receiving financial grant from GLRA for the maintenance. All the basic facilities like physiotherapy, microbiology and biochemistry laboratories, X-rays, footwear etc is provided here. The hospital is referred for treatment of complicated cases from around the country.
The reconstructive surgery of deformed hands and feet is a unique feature of the hospital. More than 6000 cases of successful reconstructive surgeries have been conducted.
1986: A separate building (Dormitory Type) was constructed exclusively for girls
(Healthy children of Leprosy patients) was established with the donation from Netherlands Govt. and Prince Mukarrham Jah.
1989: Messer’s Misereor and Zentralstalle of West Germany funded the construction of ULCP administrative block, residential school for leprosy affected children, old age ladies’ ward and the T.B ward.
1990: The mechanical workshop and the administrative block were inaugurated by Swami Chidananda on the 24th of January.
1990: A new Leprosy ward, called the ‘Twilight ward’ was inaugurated by Muffakam Jah.
1992: The GLRA sanctioned the construction of two medical officers’ quarters, which were completed in the same year.
1998: The government of Andhra Pradesh had permitted SRH to initiate a pilot project for tuberculosis control. This was a private public partnership DOTS programme started in the year 1998, with financial assistance from DFID and the WHO.
This was an innovative project on anti tuberculosis covering a population of 0.5 million people in Hyderabad and was undertaken for 5 years.
2002: A microscope center covering a population of 50,000 for direct sputum testing was started for two years.
2004: Under the RNTCP (Revised National Tuberculosis Control Programme) a tuberculosis unit covering 0.5 million rural and semi urban population had been taken up to control the spread of tuberculosis. As on date more than 2000 possible deaths were prevented.
2005: With a vision to improvise and provide good quality of life to the HIV affected children, an orphanage was started in August 2005. The orphanage started with 20 children providing them with health care, education and other facilities. Emphasis is given on nutrition, immediate attention to opportunistic infection and a pleasant physical environment. Currently SRH has 35 children residing here, and we aim to expand it to 50.
2006: A Community Care Center (CCC), which was earlier, called as care and support center was established, with a vision to provide treatment of opportunistic diseases to HIV/AIDS patients. (Children/adult)
2006: SRH also established as a nodal center, for the DPMR (Deformity Prevention and Medical Rehabilitation) covering 6 districts in Andhra Pradesh. Dr. August Beine was elected a s the chairman of RCS implementation committee by the Additional District Medical and Health Officers (A&L).
2008: A PPTCT (Prevention Of Parent To Child Transmission) a programme covering a rural population of one million people spread across a large area, was started with an objective to bring down transmission of infection in new born to zero.
2008: Live broadcast programme on SRH activities, including a cultural programme with children was aired by FM Rainbow 101.9, All India Radio.
2009: On the occasion of Leprosy Day, Dr. P. Hrishikesh and Sr. Alphonsa Verghese of SRH were awarded the life time achievement awards for working in the field of Hansen’s disease elimination.