THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The state government is aiming at making the best medical treatment accessible to the common man, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said on Thursday. Chandy was speaking after inaugurating ‘Ashakiranam,’ a cancer treatment programme promoted by the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India (CBCI) and its social service wing Caritas India.
The government has so far disbursed Rs 1,200 crore to the poor through various schemes including the Karunya Benevolent Fund.
It was also with the aim of providing cost-effective medical care to all that the government has started new medical colleges in the state, he said. He lauded the efforts of the Catholic church and social service organisations such as Caritas India in the area of cancer care. ‘Ashakiranam’ focuses on providing aid and palliative care to cancer patients, training volunteers and rehabilitating families of cancer patients.
The social service wings of various Catholic congregations including the Malankara Social Service Society, the Thiruvananthapuram Social Service Society, the Kollam Social Service Society and Neyyatinkara Integral Development Society are associated with the project. Presiding over the function, Cardinal Baselios Cleemis, who heads the CBCI, called for a concerted effort to fight cancer.
The disease does not debilitate just an individual but the entire society, he said. Regional Cancer Centre director Dr Paul Sebastian, Bishop Samuel Irenios, Caritas India executive director Fr Frederick D’Souza, assistant director Fr Paul Moonjeli, society directors, Fr Bovas Mathew and Fr Lenin Raj spoke.