Assam Cancer Care Foundation, a joint initiative of the Government of Assam and Tata Trusts, set up to address issues like lack of awareness about cancer, poor access to quality medical facilities, and lack of affordability
The Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, inaugurated seven cancer care facilities in Assam, part of a state-wide, multi-level cancer care network to expand affordable cancer treatment to more towns and cities. The PM also laid the foundation stones of seven more facilities in the state, which will join the network in the second phase.
Ratan N. Tata, Chairman, Tata Trusts, said, “I am happy that the Tata Trusts, along with the State Government’s support, has been able to implement the multi-level cancer care network in Assam. Cancer care in India is challenged by lack of facilities, late diagnosis, and high cost of treatment. The Tata Trusts has resolved to combat this by supporting the creation of capabilities across the country for high quality affordable care, nation-wide screening and early detection programmes. The fruition of this project in Assam will be a guiding light to the entire country.”
The seven hospitals, inaugurated by the Prime Minister, are in Dibrugarh, Barpeta, Kokrajhar, Lakhimpur, Darrang, Jorhat, and Tezpur, and are a part of the first phase roll-out of 10 such facilities. The three other facilities in Guwahati, Silchar, and Diphu are expected to be ready in the coming months. The next set of seven hospitals, for which PM laid the foundation stones, are a part of the second phase of the programme and will come up in Sibsagar, Goalpara, Golaghat, Tinsukia, Dhubri, Nagaon, Nalbari districts of Assam.
This would be a unique initiative where state health infrastructure gets ultimately augmented with 10 MRI, 10 CT Scans, 10 Linear accelerators, 4 blood component labs, 10 automated laboratories, and 4 PET scans. This will help even non-cancer patients to access sophisticated diagnostic capabilities at affordable cost.
The multi-level cancer care model, developed by Tata Trusts, is being established and run by the Assam Cancer Care Foundation, a joint initiative of the Assam Government and Tata Trusts. Cancer care facilities in India are concentrated in big cities. Under Tata Trusts’ Distributed Cancer Care Model (DCCM), the infrastructure hierarchy will have 4 Levels, with each level playing a crucial role. Level 4 includes health and wellness centres for community outreach programmes for awareness, screening, and early detection of cancer; Level 3 centres are hospitals with day-care centres; Level 2 centres are typically at medical colleges, providing comprehensive cancer care and Level 1 facilities are apex centres providing all sophisticated forms of cancer care services, including research.