Karkinos Healthcare to establish world-class greenfield cancer care institute at Manipur
- Karkinos Manipur Cancer Institute to be operational in eight months from now
- Manipur Government gives land on a long-term lease
- The objective of the mission is to institute a unique ‘distributed cancer care’ model based on the optimal utilization of existing government healthcare infrastructure
- Conduct awareness programs focusing on the risk factors for cancers
- Implement cancer registry programs to study patterns of cancers in Manipur
In a major development for the state of Manipur, Hon’ble Chief Minister N. Biren Singh reviewed and approved a presentation, on November 24th, by Karkinos Healthcare on setting up a Cancer Control Centre in the state. This will be a state-of-the-art greenfield center at the Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Medical Sciences (JNIMS) premises at Porompat, Imphal.
The team at Karkinos Healthcare, led by R Venkataramanan (formerly Managing Trustee of Tata Trusts, Tata Memorial Hospital, Tata Medical Centre Trust, Tata Centres for Cancer Care) presented the Plan of Action to begin the construction of a hi-tech cancer center at JNIMS. This cancer centre will adopt and deliver the company’s philosophy and mission to screen and early detect for cancers, therefore, eliminating the need for citizens of Manipur to travel to neighboring states for diagnosis and treatment.
According to data from NCDIR, across the North East Region, the proportion of esophageal cancer is highest among males, followed by lung cancer and stomach cancer. In females, the breast is the leading cancer site followed by cervix uteri and gallbladder. In relation to cancer sites, in males, the probability of developing esophageal cancer (1 in every 54 males) is highest followed by lung cancer (1 in every 57 males) and stomach cancer (1 in every 78 males). In females, the probability of developing breast cancer (1 in every 76 females) is the highest followed by cancer of cervix uteri (1 in every 86 females) and lung cancer (1 in every 109 females). Screening and early detection can considerably reduce these numbers and Karkinos Healthcare intends to facilitate this screening for the common cancers affecting the people of Manipur.
Notably, Manipur, as a state, does not have a good comprehensive cancer care institute or research facility and has just one hospital providing tertiary treatment, which is largely insufficient to fulfil the current cancer care demand of Manipur.
The data with respect to the patients seeking treatment outside the state is relatively high. Indian Council of Medical Research’s (ICMR) data indicates that 62.4% of cancer patients in Manipur seek treatment outside of the Northeast, and the state’s lack of comprehensive cancer centers, as well as the high concentration of facilities in major cities, result in long travel times and out-of-pocket expenses. It is, therefore, imperative to strengthen the oncology-based infrastructure in the state to be able to address the large gap in affordable end-to-end quality cancer care in the state.
To help the state overcome these challenges and also address the gaps in cancer screening and diagnosis, Karkinos Healthcare in collaboration with the Govt. of Manipur will set up a state-of-the-art Greenfield Center in a period of eight months from now at the Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Medical Sciences (JNIMS) premises in Porompat, Imphal. The land has been given by the Manipur Government on a long-term lease.
Karkinos will be working closely with JNIMS and both the parties will be sharing the resources and technical know-how with respect to the program. The main objective of the proposed mission is to institute a unique ‘distributed cancer care’ model based on the optimal utilization of the existing government healthcare infrastructure, and a protocol and standardized model of care to address the large gap in cancer care provision through the greenfield cancer hospital in Imphal, and to leverage on the network of Health and Wellness Centers (HWCs) and its linked hierarchies of Primary Health Centers (PHCs), District Hospitals (DHs) and Government Medical Colleges (GMCs) in the state, providing cancer outreach, screening. An outreach ‘Hub and Spoke’ program will be developed and followed-up, with the hospital and JNIMS being the hub while the Health and Wellness centers (HWCs), Primary Healthcare Centers (PHCs) and District Hospitals (DHs) will be the screening and diagnostic spoke centers.
The fundamental principle of Karkinos Healthcare is to democratize cancer care in a participatory manner with the help of existing health providers, researchers, and technologists. Since the state of Manipur has a dearth of world-class cancer care facilities, the company believed its principle had to be broadened to set-up a greenfield comprehensive cancer care center from scratch that will serve the purpose at large. Given that the Gov of Manipur too has a common focus on improving the state’s healthcare infrastructure, particularly in cancer care in the State, both parties have agreed to work together on a comprehensive multi-pronged Manipur State Cancer Institute. The PPP-based comprehensive cancer care institute will be constructed on a DBFO model (Design, Build, Finance & Operate). Currently, the Director and CEO of the mission is Dr. (Prof.) G.S. Moirangthem (MBBS, MS (PGI), FRCSEd (UK), FICS (GE), FAIS, FIAGES, FMAS, FCLS).
Karkinos Healthcare will majorly support the government in conducting population-based screening of Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) including cancers of the oral cavity, breast, and cervix through the Health and Wellness Centers (HWCs) and the linked referral centers. The company will also implement awareness programs focusing on the risk factors for cancers, importance of self-examination and screening, right lifestyle habits, financing schemes available, etc., through the front-line health workers (FLHWs) under the National Health Mission (NHM). Tobacco control programs, focusing on sensitization of law enforcement personnel, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), sporting clubs, school administration, NSS cadre, etc., will also be one of Karkinos’ priorities.
In the long run, the company will take up the responsibility to jointly implement cancer registry programs to study patterns of cancers in the region in a relatively cost-effective manner that would provide important leads in undertaking research and in targeting cancer control programs.