NewsIndiaTimes - page 18

News India Times
August 26, 2016
18
V
anbandhu Arogya Dham (VAD), a
world class Healthcare facility,
Research and Training Center, is a
sincere attempt to improve quality of life
for the tribal people of Dang, Gujarat,
India, by providing a platform to deliver
communitybased healthcare services. It
is being built in Ahwa, Dang, for the
benefit of thousands of underprivileged
poor people of Dang district and
surrounding areas. One of the most
impoverished tribal pockets in India,
more than 95% of the 400,000 inhabitants
of Dang are tribal and barely survive with
the help of government programs. There
is almost complete lack of healthcare,
education, and employment
opportunities. Honorable Prime Minister,
Shree Narendrabhai Modiji, has a
personal interest in helping the
impoverished people in this area, and
will likely show his support and
appreciation for VAD project by
inaugurating the facility when completed.
The facility is the result of a gift from Mr.
Richard Condorelli upon his death. He
was a patient in Dr. Ashok Patel’s dental
practice in Waltham, Massachusetts, USA.
On a trip to India for the Ashthi Visarjan
of Mr. Condorelli’s ashes, an unplanned
drive through Dang alerted Dr. Patel to the
poverty and lack of healthcare in the poor
tribal district, inspiring him to start the
project using Mr. Condorelli’s endowment.
VAD will feature a wellequipped hospital
with a state of the art dental clinic, oral
cancer research center, a pathology lab,
and all other amenities. When fully
functional, VAD will provide free medical
and dental care to 50,000 school children
and needy adults living in Dang and
surrounding tribal areas. All phases of
medical and dental care will be available
to adults at a subsidized cost. VAD
complex will also have a separate
residential facility (hostel) for 30 tribal girls
to be trained as dental assistants, nursing
aides, and xray technicians. Once they
complete the training, appropriate
employment opportunities will be found
for each one of them amongst many
professional friends of Dr. Patel practicing
in nearby cities. Such an opportunity will
change the social and economic fabric of
Dang in years to come. General dentists
and primary care physicians will also be
trained in advocating preventative
measures and some basic surgical and
corrective procedures.
Vanbandhu Arogya Dham will focus on
prevention, early intervention, and
corrective procedures, including any
necessary rehabilitation and follow up
services. In addition, the project will offer
unique volunteer opportunities for
medical and dental students and young
doctors. The stateoftheart facility
features sanitation, instruments,
equipment, and materials that live up to
international standards. VAD is the perfect
setting for retired doctors and dentists to
carry out research projects. The project is
already partly functional. A section of the
facility is currently being used to carry out
thorough medical, dental, and sickle cell
anemia screening of school children from
local schools in Dang and surrounding
areas. All endeavors are meticulously
recorded and statistical data is available to
be shared with local health authorities,
state health ministry, and government of
India. In addition, VAD clinic currently
has a medical outreach program. Using
wellequipped mobile vans, teams of
doctors and paramedical staff regularly
visit remote villages of Dang district to
provide primary healthcare. The vans are
also used to transport the most destitute
patients to the clinic for further evaluation
and necessary treatment. Since there are so
many citizens of Dang in need of
comprehensive healthcare, participation of
foreign trained doctors and dentists is vital
for the longterm success of the project.
In December 2014, a medical team from
Nova Southeastern University (NSU),
Florida, USA visited Ahwa, Dang under
the leadership of Dean, Dr. Anthony
Silvagni, for a weeklong healthcare camp.
Dr. Silvagni and team members were truly
moved by the sufferings of over a
thousand patients and saw great potential
for future activities. As a result, another
team from NSU visited Dang in December
2015 with great success. In December 2016,
the third healthcare camp will include a
team of about 35 NSU faculty members
and students. These camps help hundreds
of underprivileged poor tribal people in
Dang and surrounding areas at no cost to
the patients. NSU is currently developing
a program to increase presence of interns
and residents at VAD yearround.
Motivated by NSU camps, specialist
medical doctors from surrounding cities of
south Gujarat participated in a
comprehensive healthcare camp on
February 14, 2016. The organizers were
overwhelmed to see 1,040 patients from
remote villages of Dang and surrounding
tribal areas, who exhibited many
preventable medical problems. About 26
patients were transported to Ami Hospital
in Bardoli for various surgeries, three
being lifesaving in nature.
A project of this magnitude is in dire need
of financial support. It is for a noble cause
that we all can be proud of. Please support
the project wholeheartedly and send your
taxexempt donation check made out to:
Richard Condorelli Memorial
Foundation
Mailing address & Contact Information:
Dr. Ashok Patel,
8 Myopia Lane, Nashua, NH 03063
6038920872
A donation receipt and appreciation
letter will be mailed promptly.
The foundation is a nonprofit tax­
exempt entity registered with the state of
Massachusetts, USA.
It is a 501(c)3 charitable foundation with
tax ID 262917177.
Vanbandhu Arogya Dham: Gateway to Healthcare for Tribal Population
Proposed VAD building under construction
Dr. Ashok Patel with Honorable Shree Narendrabhai Modiji
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