Humanitarian Missions

14. HumanitarianIASA supports mission trips for the treatment of disadvantaged patients in India. We support programs consisting of outpatient clinics, surgeries, post-operatives rounds, and teaching seminars for the benefit of local healthcare staff.

In February 2013, IASA proudly supported its first mission, Operation Straight Spine (OSS). OSS is the primary mission project of the Spine Education and Research Foundation, an arm of The Foundation of Orthopaedic Association of Allentown, PA, a non-profit charitable organization led by Dr. Jeffrey McConnell. IASA member Dr. Harvinder (Bobby) Bhatti of Rockdale Orthopedic Center in Conyers, GA, joined OSS for a week in Kolkata, where the mission treated 14 patients.

In 2014 IASA supported the efforts of a team from UK headed by Dr. Sashin Ahuja of University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, with cooperation with Polio Foundation in Ahmedabad, India. A total of 10 patients were operated on at the Polio Foundation Hospital, and the B.J Medical College Civil Hospital.

The UK team of surgeons and neuro monitors returned to Polio Foundation in Ahmedabad for a week in January 2016, and then again in December of the same year, to perform six successful deformity procedures. A report with photos from the December trip is posted below.

In November 2017, an international team of US and UK surgeons along with colleagues in Ahmedabad will again assemble at the Health & Care Foundation for a week of surgeries.

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IASA Humanitarian Mission at Health & Care Foundation in Ahmedabad

The Health & Care Foundation once again hosted a team of surgeons, anesthesiologists, and neuro-monitoring specialists from the UK and from local hospitals who volunteered their time and expertise to perform six complex deformity surgeries. Now an annual effort, the mission is financially supported by IASA, with donated instruments and products from Globus Medical. The team consisted of the following:

  • Mr. Shaishav Bhagat, Ipswich Hospital
  • Mr. Jayesh Trivedi, Oswestry & Alder Hey Hospitals
  • Mr. Vinay Jasani, Royal Stoke University Hospital
  • Dr. Amit Jhala, and Dr. Nisarg Parikh, both from Chirayu Hospital
  • Mr. Mushtaq Shaikh, Neurophysiologist, Bespoke Healthcare
  • Dr. Bharat Oza, Anesthesiologist from Chirayu Hospital
  • Ian Weighell, Globus Medical UK

Here is the story of 4 of the six patients, aged 11 to 16:

RASHMIKA PARMAR – 16 years old

Rashmika is the eldest daughter of Mr. Vinodbhai Parmar & Smt. Minaxiben Parmar from Ahmedabad. The parents have 2 other daughters. Her mother and father both work in a private hospital receiving a monthly income of INR 7,500 each, i.e. around $125. She in the 11th grade at a local school.

Till the age of 14, everything seemed normal but in fact Rashmika was being stricken by Scoliosis. At 16, her entire family was anxious about her future when she developed a hump on her back. When she was taken to the local civil hospital, she was diagnosed as ADOLSCENT IDIOPATHIC SCOLIOSIS and was advised for surgery, but the doctor could not guarantee the results. The family doctor referred them to the Health and Care Foundation. Luckily Rashmika was selected as a patient for the mission. She was admitted and the team of experts performed the surgery with full care which lasted for 8 hours with very good results.

Now Rashmika is very happy to walk with her straight back, which she was able to do on the 3rd day post-surgery. The Parmar family is grateful to have their daughter back to normal and are praising the team of surgeons, IASA, and Health & Care Foundation.

FATEMA POGVADA – 11 years old

The very cute daughter of Mr. Imranbhai and Smt. Shabanabanu, from Lalpur, a small village 85 kms from Ahmedabad is the eldest of three children, with a brother and a sister. Her father works in the private sector with a monthly income of 8,000 INR or about $133. He is the only income earner in the family. Fatema studies in 5th grade in a local school.

The parents were deeply concerned when Fatema started showing signs of a deformed spine. The family was anxious as Fatema completely lost her confidence. She stopped going to school as her classmates were making fun of her. But they didn’t lose hope and consulted a primary health sector, where Fatema was diagnosed with KYPHOSCOLIOSIS. The school health worker informed them about the Health & Care Foundation, and the family immediately came to the center without hesitation. Here at the hospital they consulted with the spine surgeon, Dr. Amit Jhala. As the family was not able to afford any procedures, Dr. Jhala asked them to keep in touch with them for surgery. As soon as the team of spine surgeons from the U.K. came to the hospital, they registered Fatema for surgery. She was operated successfully; the operation lasted for 5 hours. Now the little girl walks again with her normal and straight back. She has gained more confidence and her height has increased now that she can walk straight.

Fatema is blissfully living a happy life. A few days following the operation, she joined her school again. Now everything has become normal again for Fatema and her family. Naturally Fatema’s parents are very thankful to HEALTH & CARE FOUNDATION as she gained her confidence back.

SANGEETA RAIKA – 13 years old

A sweet daughter of Mr. Thanaji and Smt. Mohiniben, from Ahmedabad, who have a hard time providing for their family of five. Sangeeta’s father works as a security guard in the private sector and her mother works as a house maid for nearby families. Their total income per month is 10,000 INR, about $167.

At thirteen a girl becomes a teenager. This should be a happy time for Sangeeta, but unfortunately at the age of 12, she started developing a hump on her back with severe backache; she couldn’t walk, stand, or sit for long periods. So the parents consulted with their primary health center where she was diagnosed with SCOLIOSIS. The health worker referred her to the HEALTH & CARE FOUNDATION. Here she was selected for the mission.

The operation lasted for 8 hours and it was completely successful. On the 4th day post-surgery, she started walking without any pain. Now she is completely free from her all complaints. Her height has also increased now and her posture has naturally improved. Her parents are very thankful to the team of expert doctors who helped them by bringing their daughter’s life to normal again. Sangeeta also is very happy and now greets her doctors with a big smile on her face.

SANDHYA RAJPUT – 14 years old

A very sincere daughter of Mr. Gayaprasad Bhai and Smt. Rajkumari Ben, from Kathvada, a small village near Ahmedabad, her mother is a housewife and her father works as a laborer in the private sector with a monthly income of 12,000 INR, approx. $200. Her father is the only person to earn bread and butter for the family.

At the age of 8, Sandhya developed a tumor like swelling on her right back which was increasing gradually in size. Her parents consulted with the government hospital, where they got an x-ray done. Sandhya was diagnosed with KYPHOSCOLIOSIS. Her family was very concerned. They consulted with many doctors; they all advised for surgery, which costs about 300,000 INR. But her family was not able to afford such a big amount. So they again became anxious about Sandhya’s future as kids around her started teasing her about her spinal deformity. She could not stand or sit for long periods. A primary health worker referred them to the HEALTH & CARE FOUNDATION HOSPITAL, where Sandhya was able to be operated. She got registered for camp surgery and was operated very successfully. The operation lasted for 7 hours.

She started walking with ease just 5 days following her operation. Her pain vanished completely. Her parents are very happy and greeted the team of doctors and the Health & Care Foundation for helping them.