The State Government is exploring possibilities for setting up a bone marrow transplant (BMT) clinical technology unit at SCB Medical College and Hospital (MCH) in Cuttack.
A high-level meeting chaired by Chief Secretary BK Patnaik here recently discussed the facilities available in the Department of Clinical Haematology of SCBMCH.
The Haematology Department of the premier health institution has been upgraded with state-of-the-art laboratory and treatment equipment but it needs to be complemented with bone marrow transplantation facility for the benefit of hundreds of patients who incur heavy costs for the treatment outside the State.
Facilities like flow cytometer, immunotyping, free light assay (for the detection and monitoring of multiple myeloma), automated capillary zone electrophoresis, biopsy, blood irradiator and aphaeresis machine are currently available in the clinical Haematology ward. An estimated ` 2 crore would be required to start the first phase of this clinical system for autologous BMT.
Bone marrow transplant is helpful in many neoplastic disorders like haematological malignancies, acute and chronic leukaemia, and multiple myeloma. The technology also improves the chances of cure in many non-neoplastic disorders like thalassemia, sickle cell disorder, aplastic anaemia, bone marrow failure syndrome, auto immune diseases, immunodeficiency and inborn errors of metabolism.
The process of treatment requires conditioning of cells, infusion of stem cell and post infusion care leading to production of new blood cells.
The facility for bone marrow transplant is currently available in Delhi, Lucknow, Chandigarh, Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Vellore, Banglore, Chennai, Pune and Kolkata.
According to an estimate, around 3,000 patients in the State have been detected requiring BMT during the last four years. Experts say, autologous BMT, if done in the State, would cost around Rs 2 to 3 lakh whereas patients have to shell out Rs 8 to 10 lakh outside the State. Similarly, the cost of allogeneic BMT is about Rs 20 lakh.
The Chief Secretary asked the expert committee and the Health Department to prepare a detailed project plan for operation and maintenance of such a unit for approval by the State Government.
Finance Secretary JK Mohapatra, Health Secretary PK Mohapatra, Head of the Haematology Department, SCBMCH, Dr RK Jena and Col. DK Mishra from Tata Medical Centre participated.