KOCHI: A free lung disease awareness programme and medical camp was organised by Aster Medcity Pulmonology department on November 20 at Ernakulam Town Hall to mark the World Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Day.
Actor Tovino Thomas inaugurated the day-long programmes. The medical camp featured Oxygen Bar, which provides pure oxygen to people who live in a polluted environment. It is already functional in polluted cities such as Mumbai and Pune. In addition, the camp had a special clinic to inspire people to quit smoking.
''Despite inviting Tovino to attract the youth, it is the aged persons who turned up the most. Although, being the most affected section of smoking, the youngsters showed a complete ignorance. The main reason behind the increased presence of veterans is because they have started suffering from the habits,'' says Jelson Kavalakkat, CEO, Aster Medicity.
In a survey conducted by the Pulmonology Department of Aster Medicity in April, 2018 among 7000 KSRTC commuters in Kochi, found that 36 percent of them had breathing issues. This lead them to conduct an awareness and the medical camp. "The Oxygen Bars are a necessity and will become a normal thing in the near feature. What we are doing is familiarising the public about Oxygen Bars. Oxygen Bars are seen as the last stage in a treatment by many individuals. It is not the last remedy but a helping hand.
This is what we are planning to bring to public knowledge. We are responsible people to give an awareness about the ill effects of pollution, smoke etc," says Dr Jacob Baby, Head Consultant, Pulmonology Department.
Aster Pulmonary Department has implemented a Pulmonary Rehabilitation programme. The programme employed minor breathing exercises besides medicines to manage the disease.The interactive session with DrPraveen Valsalan was informative to the patients as he answered their numeorus queries.
Tovino who campaigned against smoking through his film Theevandi experienced the Oxygen Bar. A painting competition was also conducted among the nursing students and the posters concerning the lung ailments were exhibited at the hall.