Narayana Hrudayalaya, the leading cancer care centre in the country, has performed its 1000th paediatric cardiac surgery which was funded by 'Have a Heart' Foundation. The surgeries were performed after generous donors under the Foundation contributed small and large amounts of funds to help the hospital to undertake the 1000 paediatric surgeries.
The goal of Have a Heart Foundation has always been to reach out to as many such people as possible. By funding surgeries for those who cannot afford them, it has not only able to save hundreds of lives, but also bring hope to the families of these patients. Given the high costs of heart surgeries, only about two percent of the patients needing heart surgeries in India are able to afford it. That leaves a staggering 23 lakh patients a year who are not able to afford the costs of the surgeries they require, stated Dr. Devi Prasad Shetty, managing director, Narayana Hrudayalaya.
'Have a Heart' aims to collect funds from as many people as possible and ensure that this money is used to save the lives of as many people as possible. The Foundation which started as an offshoot of Seva Free Clinic, was the brainchild of Dr. K.S. Satish, one of the leading chest physicians of Bangalore.
From what started as a 500 sq ft clinic in a car garage in 1997, Seva Clinic is now 2000 sq ft modern medical facility. Equipped with 4 consultation rooms, an Xray machine, dentist facilities, 3 counselling rooms and a large waiting area, Seva Clinic has been serving the poor for the past 12 years free of cost.
During the course of running Seva Clinic, the doctors saw numerous patients who were in dire need of heart surgeries. Their families go to great lengths to try and raise the funds needed for surgeries. Some take loans at high interest rates; there are others who are not in a position to raise the funds. Currently the Foundation funds 50 surgeries a month and as and when it gets more donors would like to do up to 100 surgeries a month. Further, there area also single donors providing assistance to over 100 surgeries.