For the last three-odd decades, Melmaruvathur Adhiparasakthi Institute of Medical Science and Research has been rendering its services to the underprivileged and striving to deliver world standard health care
CHENNAI: The story dates back to 1985 when a small room was set up inside Melmaruvathur Adhiparasakthi Temple to provide medical service to devotees who frequented the shrine. What you see now is a super-specialty tertiary care hospital,” says Dr Ramesh Thanikachalam, MD of Melmaruvathur Adhiparasakthi Institute of Medical Science and Research (MAPIMS). Located on NH-45, en route Kanchipuram, this massive, five-storied hospital is hard to miss and has been immensely contributing to medical care of the underprivileged in rural areas.
The Shakti Foundation has been contributing its proceeds from their annual fundraiser concert towards the purchase of equipment for various departments. This year, it will be for the urology ward. The hospital was founded by Bangaru Adigalar. “In 1985, senior consultants from the city visited the clinic set up inside the temple on Sundays to treat patients. About 2,000 to 3,000 patients would come every week. After 10 years of service, in 1995, the clinic was developed into a hospital with 300 beds. It was officially inaugurated in 1999 by the then chief minister, late M Karunanidhi,” says Dr Ramesh who joined the hospital in 2000. The general physician was the first post-graduate doctor to join the hospital and admit the first in-patient. In 2000, 50 out-patient departments, ICU, operation theatre, cash departments, and other services were started at the hospital.
The Dental College and Hospital was set up in 2006. Following this, 750 beds were added along with labour rooms in 2008. The same year, after getting the approval for a medical college, it was launched.
“We had 1,000 beds by then. Around 30-40 surgeries were performed in a day. Currently, we have 1,500 beds, 20 operation theatres, blood banks and all types of scans. Renal transplant will be introduced soon,” he shares. The hospital has been conducting an eye camp for the past 18 years in rural areas on March 3, the birth anniversary of its founder. Around 3,000 patients are checked and 1,300 from them are selected for free cataract surgeries.
“Our mobile hospital was launched in 2018. It has telemedical facilities and is fully equipped. This goes on outreach and awareness programmes to villages. In case of emergencies, the patients are brought to the hospital and even dropped back home. We have 24X7 trauma services with three ambulances parked near toll booths,” he says.
The 6.5 lakh-sq-ft hospital has 200 doctors and 800 paramedics. It provides free ambulance coverage to 267 villages in 80 km radius. Free medicines are distributed to more than 19 lakh patients every year. There’s free diabetic care to one lakh patients. More than 25,000 free cataract surgeries are performed, they have attended to more than 4,500 childbirths, done around 6,000 dialyses at a subsidised cost, and more than 10,000 orthos, trauma, bone and joint treatments have been formed. Eighteen lakh patients are given free food at the hospital. Cardiac surgeries, angiography, and angioplasty are done at low cost.
Emergency services, critical care, venerology, hemodialysis, general medicine, intervention radiology, master health checkup, medical gastroenterology, nephrology, neurosurgery, gynecology, ENT, reconstructive surgery, respiratory medicine, rheumatology, spine surgery, transfusion and urology are a few among the other departments. “All our medical services are free. We have only 75 out of those 1,500 beds for charged services. We’ve also applied for the title of Green Hospital under the platinum category. The vision has always been to deliver world standard comprehensive health care services to the common man with expertise, excellence, compassion and integrity,” says Dr Ramesh.
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