Heart surgery for Ethiopian children in Bengaluru
Four children from Ethiopia suffering from congenital heart disease were successfully treated at the Jayadeva Hospital in Bengaluru, thanks to RC Bangalore Midtown and RI District 3190’s Needy Heart Foundation (RNHF). They were the first batch of 20 children from that country shortlisted for open-heart surgery at the hospital. The remaining patients will come in batches of four in the next few months, said club president Atul Kaushal.
It all began last year when the then RI president Shekhar Mehta met the PM and the President of Ethiopia during his Africa tour and promised them that Rotary India will perform heart surgeries in India for 100 Ethiopian children with CHD. The Rotarians of Ethiopia worked out a partnership with the government and the Ethiopian Airlines to bring the children and their caretakers to India. The children, along with their parents, were flown free by the airline from Addis Ababa to Bengaluru and back, said PDG H Rajendra Rai, managing trustee, RNHF.
He thanked the foundation’s director Dr C N Manjunath, surgeons and donors for the successful execution of the surgeries.
Since 2001, the district has sponsored over 10,000 heart surgeries. Every year the club sponsors treatment for one lakh patients. “This year our emphasis is on corrective surgeries for congenital anomalies including heart, and cleft lip and palate,” said Kaushal.
Ambulances for Ukraine
The district, along with RIDs 3170 and 3182, and RID 6980, USA, recently executed a joint disaster response grant of $100,000 to provide three ambulances to Ukraine State hospitals at Mykolaiv, Dnipro, and Novooleksandriv, as the ambulance fleet here had worn out due to the war.
Speaking about the project, Rai said, “Last June when I returned from the Houston convention, Sanjay Deshpande of RC Lake Nona Lunch, RID 6980, US, asked for our assistance to execute the grant project, and the three governors — Fazal Mahmood (3190), Gaurish Dhond (3170) and Ramachandra Murthy (3182) immediately agreed.” The application was approved by TRF and the project was completed in September 2022. The vehicles were delivered to RID 2232 (Ukraine) at the Poland-Ukraine border-crossing, to be handed over to the hospitals.
The ambulances are now being used to provide emergency healthcare transportation in the war-torn country, said Rai, adding that one of the ambulances was used to transport a wounded woman to the hospital the day after it was handed over.