Monday, October 21, 2013

Health Mela is the best low-cost health awareness module

21st October 2013: New Delhi India: The health Mela concept is one of the most field-tested and successful low-cost modules for creating health awareness in the country.  The concept was started by Heart Care Foundation of India in 1993 and the Government of India earmarked the occasion by issuing a national commemorative postal stamp.  Later, the concept was adopted by the Ministry of Health, Government of India under Swasthya Mela Scheme.

Addressing a press conference, Padma Shri and Dr. B C Roy National Awardee, Dr. K K Aggarwal, President Heart Care Foundation of India said that Health Mela concept is nothing but passing on credible health information to the people who are gathered by attracting them using traditional folk or modern infotainment modules.

The press conference was organized to earmark the 0th MTNL Perfect Health Mela to open on 23rd October.

The Mela is being organized by the Heart Care Foundation of India at Constitution Club of India, New Delhi from 23rd to 27th October, 2013 in association with the Departments of Central and Delhi Government, Central Bank of India, LIC, Coca Cola, GAIL and various hospitals and NGOs.  

The press was co-addressed by Mr. Ashok Chakradhar, noted Poet and Dr. Praveen Chandra, Chairman, Interventional Cardiology at Medanta - The Medicity, Gurgaon.

The experts said that today when Delhi alone has over 65 national news channels and newspapers, there is always a shortage of medical experts available for quotes.
Any wrong information from the mouth of a health expert can create panic in the society.  Giving examples the experts said that Swine Flu panic ended up with increased number of patients with rheumatic fever and dengue epidemic panic has ended up with unnecessary platelet transfusion.

The expert said that time has come for the health information to be regulated by the councils.  

Dr. Aggarwal said that under Section 7.11 of Code of Medical Ethics by Medical Council of India,  a doctor should not contribute to the lay press articles and give interviews regarding diseases and treatments which may have the effect of advertising himself or soliciting practices; but is open to write to the lay press under his own name on matters of public health, hygienic living or to deliver public lectures, give talks on the radio/TV/internet chat for the same purpose and send announcement of the same to lay press.
Therefore, any exaggeration of a disease or creating panic in the society, soliciting patients amounts to professional misconduct.

The experts talked about the following principles of communication:
1.   The health information should be fact-based, field tested and should not create any panic or fear in the society.
2.   The principles of hit the iron when it is hot and involving the people who counts should be adhered to.
3.   While giving a health statement, the doctor should also quote credible source of information.
4.   As of today, the credible sources of studies are Meta-Analysis, Randomized controlled studies and Reviews published in credible journals.  Individual case reports or non-randomized controls may not be accepted as the recommendations.
5.   Any claim of cure should be accepted with a pinch of salt.
6.   The Medical Council of India does not allow doctors to endorse any drug or product publicly. The council expects that any study conducted by a doctor on the efficacy or otherwise of a product shall be first presented to and/or through appropriate scientific bodies or published in a proper scientific journal in a proper way. 
7.   Health information should be evidence-based medicine. 

About HCFI : The only National Not for profit NGO, on whose mega community health education events, Govt. of India has released two National Commemorative stamps and one cancellation stamp, and who has conducted one to one training on” Hands only CPR” of 63425 people since 1st November 2012.
The CPR 10 Mantra is – “Within 10 minutes of death, earlier the better; at least for the next 10 minutes, longer the better; compress the centre of the chest of the dead person continuously and effectively with a speed of 10x10 i.e. 100 per minute.”

1 comment:

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