Cardiology, Dermatology, Endocrinology, and General Medicine Camps November 2018

A one-day multi-disciplinary camp that saw nearly 250 patients included Haven's second ever Heart Camp alongside our #mendbrokenhearts appeal

On Saturday 24th November 2018, our team of four consultants managed to see nearly 250 patients in just six hours of consulting time. For the first time in nearly a decade, Haven held a specialist Cardiology camp. The long wait for a second round has been because of the prohibitive costs of referal surgeries. This time, though, with an exceptionally generous consultant cardiologist and the goodwill of our supporters who responded to the #mendbrokenhearts appeal, Haven felt ready to take on this challenge.

Dr. Nurul Islam is an Interventional Paediatric Cardiologist in Kolkata and Durgapur. He has a special interest in foetal cardiology and experience in performing complex procedures in babies who weigh as little as 1.2kg (less that 3lbs). Before this visit, Dr Islam has performed a number of complicated procedures for referall patients from Haven, but this was his first time running a Cardiology camp at our centre. His care for the 32 patients that he saw during the day was seen in the calm showed by scared children as they spent time in his consulting room. With Dr Islam's reputation and contact he was able to provide Haven with an amazing gift for the day - an ultrasound machine. This high-spec, top of the range machine allowed him to diagnose and refer patients instantly, without having to make them wait for further tests. Haven is indebted to Dr Islam for his initiative and dedication in making this all possible. At the end of his camp, there were 10 patient referrals, which is why the #mendbrokenhearts appeal is still in place.

Dr Rajat Sarkar, who is originally from Atla, ran the Dermatology camp and insisted on bringing his donation of all medications that would be issued to patients. To save Haven and MBCF any other costs, Dr Sarkar's compounder, who has worked with him for many years, also volunteered his time and helped patients understand how to adminster their treatments. In all they saw 78 patients and referred one for further investigation.

Back for their second visits, Dr Ashim Sinha and Dr Tapan Halder, brought their expertise to the multi-disciplinary day. Dr Sinha ran the Endocrinology camp and saw 61 patients, referring three. On his last visit, Dr Sinha had very kindly donated a Personal A1c Diabetes HbA1c Rapid Test Kit. This kit allows people to test whether they have sugar levels in a diabetic range. A1c has become a home testing kit for HbA1c and, thanks to Dr Sinha's generosity, we now have this available at our centre. The test requires a drop of blood and allows you to get a good reading of your HbA1c level within a few minutes. Tarok, MBCF Physiotherapist, was able to test the patients as he was fully trained by Dr Sinha. The kit was used heavily during the Endocrinology camp showing just how necessary it is. Haven would ike to extend sincere thanks to Dr Sinha for his kind donation.

Dr Halder oversaw the General Medicine camp, he saw 71 patients and referred three for further treatment. Dr Haldar was assisited by MBCF RMO, Dr Abir Pal, who proved to be of enormous help especially in interpreting patient concerns. This is due to a very different dialect used by the villagers in the surrounding local communities. Dr Haldar commented several times as to how the efficiency of the General Medicine camp was improved thanks to Dr Abir's local knowledge. Both camps were exceptionally busy, but the two consultants kept their calm. Patients were very touched by their care during consultations, and felt they had been looked after to the highest of standards.

As always, the day was punctuated by a breathtaking cultural show, which was all tied into the theme of mending broken hearts. Nandita Ghosh, MBCF trustee, was solely responsible for coordinating the choreography, choice of songs and dancers, and putting the whole show together. It lifted the spirits of patients with difficult conditions, and doctors who had worked incredibly hard all morning. With a brighter atmosphere, all participants of the camps were ready for a hearty midday meal, which was kindly sponsored this time by Dr Halder. The rooftop lunch ensured that everyone was well-fed for the busy afternoon. Our sincere thanks to Dr Haldar for, not only donating his valuable time to run the General Medicine camp, but also for his sponsoring all the meals for everyone involved over the entire two days it took to set up and host the camps this November.

Haven would like to thank all four consultants whose generosity will not be forgotten, and whose time has already changed the lives of the people Haven helps. Our biggest thanks must always go to the MBCF staff and volunteers, some of who attended our primary learning centre and are now students of the Haven Academy. Without our team on the ground, the camps could not have taken place, and so many patients, who have no other means of accessing affordable healthcare, could not have been helped.






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