Hospital on wheels

TANMOY CHAKRABORTY

Over 8000 patients were treated in ‘Life Line Express’ in the far-flung areas of North Tripura district since last 17 days at Churaibari railway station.

People from Assam and Tripura were delighted after getting the good facilities and better treatment from the Life Line Express.

A thirty year old Biswajit Chanda a day labour, hailed from a remote area of Nandigram in Assam came here along with his son Niranjan Chanda (2) for operating his son’s cleft lips. Chanda is delighted after his son had undergone a successful cleft lip operation with the ‘Life Line Express’

“I am very happy because my son can laugh and smile normally. My relatives who are living here informed us about the Life Line Express. I couldn’t meet the expenses of the surgery in the other hospital so I came here on December 26 last and the Life Line Express arranged for my accommodation, food and made the surgery without any cost. My son is now well and we are returning home today”, Chanda told.

The Lifeline Express is a train healthcare service, which was set up in 1991 as a joint initiative of Impact India Foundation, Indian Railways and the ministry of health. The train arrived in Tripura on December 18 last and provided free medical aid and relief to over 1,000 patients in two days. The hospital train received a good response from the people.

Another patient from Churaibari area came in the hospital train for her eyes.

A seventy-year-old lady Sumati Rani Dhar came for her eye’s treatment and said, “It is impossible for poor people like us to go outside of the state. Earlier I consulted with 2-3 doctors in Agartala but which was not helped me. I heard the train came here and I consulted with the doctors. They provided me free treatment and medicine also. Today they are giving us spectacles and we dint find any troubles here”.

Pawan kumar an office assistant of the ‘Life Line Express’ said around 8000 patients were treated from December 18 to till today.

“We arrived here on December 18 last and from that day our surgeries were started. Around 8000 patients we treated till today and we will leave Tripura on January 6 this year. We came from Bihar to Tripura and we will leave for Maharashtra”, Kumar said.

Kumar Said they were providing total seven services in the train including Orthopaedic, Surgical Intervention, Plastic Surgical correction of Cleft Lip and post burn contractures, ENT, Eye, Cancer (Brest, oral), Dental, Epilepsy.

“We are providing seven services in free of cost and also provided medicine to them. 900 specs and 242 ear machine we distributed among the patients”, he said.

Pawan also informed about the ‘Life Line Express’ and said he feel good when he treated the people of remote area.

“The train started the journey since 28 years ago with three coaches. In 2017 we got seven coaches. We have two OPD and five tables in the OPD. We are total 20 staff members permanent and Doctors came from other states like Mumbai, New Delhi and Bangalore. Around 50-60 Doctors visited here. We have arranged a boy’s hostel and a Government Hospital for the surgery patients in Churaibari and provided them free food and 4 ambulances were there also. The villagers also helped us by providing volunteers”, Pawan said.

The Office assistant said it’s their 199 camp and in Maharashtra it would be 200 camps for them.

“In Tripura it’s our 199 camps and it would be 200 when we will leave for Maharashtra on January 6.  We have covered 22 states including Tripura. And a large number of patients were visit the hospital train from Assam in Tripura”. Kumar said.

He also added that the authority would visit Tripura again.