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Faculty from the ABDO College, Kent, UK throw new light on parameters and potential of new course

Ophthalmic Dispensing program Students and Parents attending the session


Faculty from ABDO College, UK interacting with Students


Ms. Miranda Richardson, Asst Director of Professional Examinations, ABDO having a lively chat with students

The SN Academy added a feather to its cap when it conducted the first interactive session between the first batch of 3 ½ years Baccalaureate in Ophthalmic Dispensing students and a team of faculty from its course collaborator the Association of British Dispensing Opticians (ABDO), UK.

The session was held on 22nd September in the presence of Shri A Mahalingam Asst Registrar and Prof S Ramani – Principal of SN Academy

The UK team was represented by Shri. T.Pavanakumar, Chief Finance officer, Ms. Miranda Richardson, Asst Director of Professional Examinations, Ms. Diane Nash and Mr. Paul Schimell, Examiners from ABDO College, Kent, UK.

Welcoming the gathering of students, parents and faculty members, Dr. Anuja R Singh, HOD – Optometric Education, the SN Academy, said this is a first of its kind program of international standards in India in the field of Ophthalmic Dispensing. Observing that the UK team of examiners were very meticulous and looked for fine details even while conducting examinations, she advised the students to imbibe the same qualities with the help of the faculty of ABDO College, UK. She added that the SN Academy has created a platform for creating world class talent right here in India and the students should make use of it.

Speaking next, Shri Pavanakumar of ABDO College pointed out that the statistics in India on spectacle dispensing is very poor and by pursuing this course successfully, a student can go and work in the UK subject to immigration laws. Ms. Miranda Richardson gave a detailed presentation about the course and the ways the exams are conducted.

The program concluded with a very useful and lively session where parents and students interacted with the UK faculty.

The Indian Express

Sankara Nethralaya OM Trust conducts a musical fundraiser

Sankara Nethralaya OM Trust

The mellifluous tunes of the Nadaswaram, India’s pride are so captivating that they are believed to have the mystical quality of enhancing the output of crops in the paddy fields and making cows produce more milk. The Sankara Nethralaya OM Trust organized a rare Nadaswaram concert by brothers Kala Saraswathy, Kalaimamani Kasim and Babu disciples and grandsons of the legendary Dr. Sheikh Chinna Moulana Saheb on August 17, 2014 at the Sri Siva Vishnu Temple Auditorium, Lanham, MD. Shri Kasim and Shri Babu come from a traditional family of musicians with an unbroken and glorious history running to 300 years and are among the front ranking Nadaswaram artists in the world. The virtuoso performers are noted for both raga alapana and kirti rendering in gayaki style especially in Dhikshithar kirtis. The event was well attended by over 250 members. This is the first time that the Trust presented such a concert and the program was well appreciated and enjoyed by the audience. Mr. S. V. Acharya, President gave the welcome address and highlighted the issue of the visually impaired population in the Indian sub continent. Mr. K. G .Venkataraman, Executive Trustee explained the various donation plans and how the public can support this noble cause. The program concluded with a Vote of thanks by Mr. Shankar Iyer, Executive trustee, highlighting the versatility exhibited by the artists. The program succeeded in spreading the message of Sankara Nethralaya’s philosophy and commitment towards total eradication of blindness and the need to support its noble crusade, among the Indian population of the region.

The 7th batch of TSNA’s “Certificate Course in Hospital Management’ get certified

The certificate awarding ceremony of the 12 weekend certificate program in Hospital Management conducted by the Sankara Nethralaya academy, an education wing of the Sankara Nethralaya, a unit of Medical Research Foundation was conducted successfully on 13.09.2014 at Sankara Nethralaya main campus, College road, Chennai 6.

Padma Bhushan Dr SS Badrinath – Founder -  Sankara Nethralaya with the successful Hospital Management Graduates.

Hospital Management Graduates interact with Dr S S Badrinath

Shri K.S. Sasikumar, CEO, Agada Diabetes Care receiving his course completuion certificate from Dr S S Badrinath

The event was conducted to present Certificates to the sixth batch students completing the course. The successful candidates from junior to mid and senior level management positions from a broad spectrum of health care institutions ranging from single specialty to multi-specialty hospitals found the course to be of great relevance to their vocation in terms of enhancing their skill sets, equipping them to handle direct and related healthcare issues and to organize their departments much better.

While the course won overall praise for its holistic approach to hospital management, in-depth, wide and well researched content and professional levels of tutoring by the faculty, TSNA staff members won praise and admiration for their efforts in making the entire learning experience very pleasant and memorable.

On their successful completion of their course the students had the good fortune of having an interactive session with the Founder & Chairman Emeritus of Sankara Nethralaya & the SN Academy Padma Bhushan Dr SS Badrinath, they shared their experiences with him and received their certificates and good wishes from him.

The Senior Management Executives from premium health care institutions like Vhasantha Hospital and Wellness Research Center,Tiruvannamalai,Apollo Hospitals, Chennai

byantra Technologies,Pvt Ltd,Medicare TPA services (I) Pvt. Ltd,Govt Hospitals,Tirupattur,Lions Cancer Hospital,Eagle Medical Systems, PVT Ltd,Krishna Eye & ENT Hospital,Vipul Med Corp TPA, Pvt Ltd,Venkateswara Hospitals,Agada Diabetes Care,SM Consortium, Chennai RG Eye care, Chennai,Sinus & Nose Hospital,,Narayana Dental College, Andra Pradesh other renowned Healthcare institutions who participated in this weekend Certificate Course in Hospital management shared their feedback about this session most enthusiastically.

Prof S. Ramani, Principal of the academy informed that the academy is in the process of introducing few new programs with Madras University collaboration.

Mr A. Mahalingam, the Program Director and Assistant Registrar of the Sankara Nethralaya Academy took this opportunity to wish the participants for their cooperation and successful completion and also thanked the organizations sponsoring the candidates and remarked  highly about the dedicated management faculty members for their excellent support to run this course very successfully, he also announced that the next batch of this program( 8th batch) would be commencing from 4th October 2014, for details & registrations www.thesnacademy.ac.in to be visited.

Mr A.  Mahalingam also highlighted the importance of Quality Assurance in healthcare management and informed that the SN  Academy will be launching another 12 weekend – Certificate Course in Healthcare Quality Management in collaboration with AHPI (Association of Healthcare Providers –India), New Delhi  and ACME Consulting Ltd, Chennai

Testimonials from students of – 7th Batch of Certificate Course in Hospital Management Participants

Dear Mahalingam Sir

Many Thanks for your mail & messages. It has been wonderful to get associated with you & TSNA academy by way of this course. I was initially a bit apprehensive when I first went through your advertisement, whether I would be the right candidate especially from a Life Insurance Background. But now having completed the course, it gives me immense pleasure that I’ve learned something new about Hospital Management, hospital administration, Health Claims Marketing/ Claims process, NABH accreditation of hospitals, Leadership, Team Building etc.. It was a renewed treat for me, having learnt management @ LIBA about 15 years back which shaped up my corporate career.

I wish to place on record, my appreciations to all the faculty members (not to single out anybody) for their lively interactions & unstinted guidance to make us, candidates comfortable & share their valuable insights & experiences.

I wish the TSNA Academy All the VERY BEST & May many more such courses find it roots in the academy especially catering to applicants from interior & rural Tamil Nadu. You can count on me for any support your require to spread this awareness message.

With Best Wishes & Regards
T. Arockiaraj Dev
Regional Manager, Medicare TPA services (I) Pvt Ltd
Regional Office- Chennai.
Mob: 98412 90771.

Om Sai Ram….

Testimonial from

1. Sir first of all … my sincere thanks to you for your great efforts in all the classes which I had attended for the past 12 weeks it was a great service from you sir and sir your service is awesome and excellent. the success of this 7th batch CCHM course all the credit will goes to you since you are a hard worker and also you have very good patients by handling different types of egoistic persons present in the hall. So hats off to you sir.

2. All the sessions went of well sir and it was a full attendance in all the sessions for the past 12 weeks which was a success to the course organizers .

3. Sir Regarding Faculties IE teaching faculties all the faculties are very well  experienced and all are very good in teaching. Sir teaching is an art and parting their knowledge to all is a unique attitude towards growth of all who will not be done by all in this world due to fear complex and self growth sir there are very few in this world who part their knowledge but all your faculties are excellent in teaching to other and parting their own self experience to others. Sir all the faculties are well educated and sir they are very courteous while teaching and clearing all the doubts and especially the lady who took team work class she has got excellent knowledge abt team work and her husband is also a great teacher .

4. Lecture Hall is excellent with clean and neat atmosphere and well maintained AC with good cooling effects and also the projector is good with the technician available on call all the time. Lecture hall is great and I have-not seen such a clean and neat lecture hall anywhere in India where I have undergone few PG courses and this hall is beautiful.

5.Last but not the least there are no words to appreciate the snacks which you have provided in every class sir  I think even in 5 star category hotels won’t provide this kind of quality snacks and very delicious vada, spring rolls, samosas etc…. still my tongue is waiting for those excellent snacks.

6. Sir by attending this CCHM course I have to appreciate the SN academy because the SN academy s objective is to teach courses that deal with A to Z in healthcare services including Hospital Management which has assumed great relevance in view of health care assuming great importance owing to the entry of corporate houses into health care delivery, increasing health care awareness among the general public and India especially Southern India emerging as a preferred health care destination and I feel that SN academy is not a commercial oriented academy like other institute behave commercially without giving anything academically and certain institutes just work for commercial but in SN its a different atmosphere.

7. The Sankara Nethralaya Academy’s courses in hospital management are backed by the expertise and rich experience gained over thirty years of running a highly successful and respected health care enterprise.

8. The CCHM faculties … all the faculties employ a system of educating people by imparting knowledge through instructional courses, training classes, and usher in newer training/teaching methodologies including the use of IT.

9.  The CCHM faculties … all the faculties did a excellent job in  Spreading of knowledge for the common good which no other institute does in these days.

I wish all the best to you for your future CCHM batches sir and since this course is excellent in all aspects I will recommend attending this course

to view of my friends.

K. R.Seshadri.
Branch Manager.
Eagle Medical Systems Pvt.ltd.
Importers for Richard-Wolf GMbH/Soring USA /Trumpf USA/Deka  Italy/Asclepion GmBh/Eigen.USA
Chennai Branch Office.
Door No.22, Plot No.64, Gugan Street,
West Kamakoti Nagar,
Valasaravakkam, (Near Vishwaroop Saibaba Temple.)
Chennai- 600087
Tel- 9444381862.

Sankara Nethralaya confers high honours on its well wishers on its 36th Foundation Day

Sankara Ratna awards

The Temple of the Eye entered its 37th year of service to humanity with great pride and joy on the 6th of September 2014, the day marked the conferring of the Sankara Ratna and Smt M.S. Subbulakshmi awards to the great people who have shared its dream, supported its cause and celebrated its achievements. The proceedings started with a warm welcome to the awardees, distinguished guests, members of the Sankara Nethralaya family and well wishers to the momentous occasion and a note on the awards being conferred by Dr. Pramod Bhende, Director- Medical Affairs, Medical Research Foundation. It was a happy coincidence that it was his birthday too!

Introducing the Chief Guest Shri Bharath Joshi, Deputy British Deputy High Commissioner to Chennai and Guest of Honour Srimathi Bombay Jayashri, Dr. Smitha Praveen Vittal, Senior Consultant, General Ophthalmology described the former as an accomplished diplomat and crisis manager and highlighted the eminent singer’s study on the therapeutic qualities of music, so apt to the occasion.

Speaking on the occasion Srimathi Akila Ganesan, Senior General Manager, Sankara Nethralaya gave an interesting note on the institution celebrating its 37th birthday, touching on its founding principles, the impact of its cost free services on society, its contributions to preventive, India centric ophthalmic research and groundbreaking academic initiatives. She observed that interestingly it was in his 37th year that Dr SS.Badrinath embarked on his journey of eliminating blindness by founding the Sankara Nethralaya on the holy command of the Seer of Kanchi and the institution he founded was celebrating its 37th year of glorious service to mankind on the day. She summed up the spirit of Nethralaya with a highly touching story of an indigent patient who had saved her hard earned money to make a pilgrimage, but so moved was she by the cost free services rendered by Sankara Nethralaya that she chose to give it to the ‘Temple of the eye’ doing God’s own work.

Dr T.S.Surendran, Vice-Chairman, Sankara Nethralaya took the audience on an interesting walk down memory lane, remarking in his characteristic lighter vein that the long hours of duty kept the pioneers of the institution within its premises much after day fall so they could see neither the Sun nor their Son, he had a high word of praise for the charitable work being carried out by the Sankara Ratna awardee Shri V.V. Ranganathan through his Sai Annalakshmi scheme.

This was followed by the most awaited moment of the day, the conferring of the Sankara Ratna award to Shri V.V.Ranganathan by Shri Bharath Joshi, British Deputy High Commissioner to Chennai and the Srimathi M.S. Subbulakshmi Award to Shri S.Rajarathinam and Shri K.S.Jayaraman, Directors Autotech Industries and long time friends and supporters of Sankara Nethralaya by renowned vocalist Srimathi Bombay Jayashri, to the thunderous applause of the packed Sri V.D.Swami Auditorium. Delivering the acceptance speech Shri V.V.Ranganathan described Dr. SS.Badrinath as a dignified, disciplined, devoted and diligent individual with an enthusiasm which was contagious. He recalled that Dr SS.Badrinath gave the go ahead for his work ‘Insight’ only after repeated entreaties and assurances that it would not be a story on him but a story of Sankara Nethralaya and the people who helped in bringing it to its glorious stature. Dr. Sheila John, Head – Teleophthalmology and Dr.S.Ambika, Senior Consultant, Neuro-Ophthalmology introduced the Smt M.S.Subbulakshmi awardees Shri Rajarathinam and Shri Jayaraman giving an interesting account of their yeoman service to Sankara Nethralaya. Delivering their acceptance speech a visibly moved Shri Jayaraman and Shri Rajarathinam expressed their joy and pride and gratitude at being conferred with the award for their services to an institution which they adored.

The day witnessed the inauguration of the baccalaureate in ophthalmic dispensing by the Chief Guest Shri Bharath Joshi, Shrimathi Akila Ganesan, Senior General Manager explained that this course would meet the need for a thorough understanding of this field, speaking on the occasion, Shri Bharath Joshi observed that nations must be measured for their social relevance and not there economic clout, he closed his address with a call for deeper relationship between India and the UK in the areas of Academics and Research.

The day ended with a Vote of Thanks by Dr R.Srikanth, Associate Consultant-Pediatric Ophthalmology.

Tributes and fond recollections of a great teacher and good friend mark the observation of the 7th Dr K.P.Misra Endowment Oration

Dr K.P.Misra Endowment Oration

The little bottle of water clasped in his hand, had over the years become an intrinsic part of the great speaker’s oration, the imposing image of a smiling Dr. K.P.Misra holding the little resource in hand after quenching his thirst was hence a very familiar sight for the audience gathered at the Sri V.D.Swami Auditorium on 5th September 2014, for the 7th Dr.K.P.Misra Endowment Oration. It took them a few minutes to come to terms with the stark reality that it was not real but a framed photograph of the great teacher, a sad reminder that the acclaimed speaker would not speak anymore in the oration named in his honour. The annual event conducted to honour the world acclaimed teacher, discover and propagate the ancient glory of Utkal (Orissa) and the Bhubhaneswar temple started with the lighting of the lamp by the Chief Guest and speaker of the day eminent columnist, crusader of social causes and political analyst Shri S.Gurumurthy, Dr SS.Badrinath, Chairman Emeritus, Sankara Nethralaya, Dr Arathi Priti Misra, wife of late Dr. Misra, eminent Nephrologist Dr. MK.Mani, a long time associate of Dr. Misra, Smt Vani Jayaram and members of the Jagannath Spiritual Educational Cultural Trust and Utkal Association of Madras. The proceedings got off with a soul stirring invocation by Srimathi Vani Jayaram followed by a warm welcome address by Shri Ravi Malhotra, Trustee, SJCET; he described Dr. S.S.Badrinath as a pillar of strength and the moving force behind the endowment oration. Introducing the award and the man in whose honour it was named Dr. S.S.Badrinath gave an interesting note on the genesis and purpose of the oration, he expressed his thanks to Dr. Arathi Priti Misra and  and Shri Vivek Misra wife and son of late Dr.K.P.Misra for taking the trouble of travelling a long distance  to participate in the function. He also introduced the guest of honour Dr. M.K.Mani, Chief Nephrologist, Apollo Hospitals, highlighting his towering achievements in the field of nephrology.

Speaking on his long association with Late Dr. Misra, Dr M.K Mani recalled his first meeting with the great orator in the 80’s at Junagadh, he highlighted that it was a combination of knowledge, clarity of expression and superb sense of humour that made Dr. KPM an outstanding orator, he also dwelt on his other qualities, describing him as a concerned, caring and most approachable doctor which made him immensely popular with his patients. Dr Mani described his old friend as a humanist, philosopher, ardent devotee and a duty conscious son and ended his talk with the Shakespearian quote ’The elements were so mixed in him that one day the world would get up and say ‘This was a man’.

Chief guest Shri S.Gurumurthy started his oration with a strong note that present day education in the country did not shape the youth of the nation to be good citizens or realize the greatness of their land. He made an emphatic appeal to the youth of the nation to shake off their colonial hangover and servile attitude which made them look to the west for everything. He described Dr. S.S.Badrinath as a spiritualist and role model for today’s youth. Giving the acceptance speech Dr Arati Priti Misra, wife of Dr K.P.Misra described her late husband as a Karmayogi, dedicated to the guru-sishya  parampara, she gave a most touching note of Dr. K.P.Misra’s last address where he described the last part of ‘prayer’ as silence where the man and the maker are in holy union and how he never came out of this silence, the man who had believed that the best way to go for a teacher is while he was teaching, had departed silently during an address. Speaking on the occasion a highly emotional Vivek Misra, son of Dr K.P.Misra declared that the best way to pay homage to the great man’s memory would be inspiring future generations to imbibe our old values and by realizing the greatness of our nation.

This was followed by fond recollections and homage to Dr. K.P.Misra by the members of the Jagannath Spiritual Educational Cultural Trust and Utkal Association of Madras.

High profile financial services provider prefers Sankara Nethralaya as its CSR partner

Computer Age Management Services

Computer Age Management Services (CAMS) the well known, Chennai based, transfer agency to the asset management industry and technology enabled service solutions partner to private life insurance companies, chose Sankara Nethralaya as its partner to execute its Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives for year 2014. Sri N.K. Prasad, President & CEO and Sri P.B.Vijayaraghavan, VP – Operations handed over a cheque towards the same to Srimathi Akila Ganesan, Senior General Manager, Sri S.Alagiri, Deputy General Manager, Resource Mobilization and Srimathi B.Kavitha, Senior Executive, Fund Raising, Sankara Nethralaya at their Corporate office. The amount would go towards meeting the cost of providing 100 complex ophthalmic surgeries totally cost free, to indigent patients screened at the various Sankara Nethralaya centers and cost free eye camps in the rural areas.

Sankara Nethralaya’s knowledge dissemination initiative reaches across the bamboo curtain

ORBIS

It was a glorious feather in Sankara Nethralaya’s cap and a momentous occasion for its ongoing initiatives in ‘Knowledge dissemination for the common good’ which is one of its founding principles, when the International Council of Ophthalmology (ICO) and ORBIS (China Chapter) two highly prestigious bodies governing Ophthalmology worldwide invited Dr.Meenakshi Swaminathan, Director Academics, Senior Consultant, Pediatric Ophthalmology,  SN-ORBIS POLTC under the “Children‘s Healthy Eyes Bring Educational Reward” (CHEER) project as a content expert to facilitate the adaptation of ICO’s curriculum in Pediatric Ophthalmology in the Shanxi province of China, on the 30th and 31st of August 2014.

Dr. Meenakshi and Dr. Karl Golnik who heads the education subdivision of ICO successfully assisted Pediatric Ophthalmologists at the Shanxi Provincial eye Hospital in Taiyuan to adapt to the prescribed curriculum through two distinct levels of training – A short term program for county level doctors and a long term program for provincial level doctors. They also familiarized the ophthalmologists on the latest teaching methodologies in the Clinic and in the Operating room and effective evaluation process of trainees, by introducing them to several new concepts in teaching and training. The trip was funded by ORBIS China.

“Chief” planner and strategist in the battle against blindness inaugurates a new fortress in western India!

Sarakshi Netralaya

Nothing gives more joy to the man to whom eradication of blindness is the dream, vision and purpose of life than the opening of a new vision care facility and the joy becomes boundless when the new initiative is by an old student and friend of Sankara Nethralaya, driven by the same value sets and principles that govern the ‘Temple of the Eye’.

A new ophthalmic center simply means greater reach of eye care and relief from visual impairments to a larger number of people in a new region and a step closer to the ultimate goal of total blindness eradication.

Dr S.S. Badrinath, Founder & Chairman Emeritus, Sankara Nethralaya, inaugurated and blessed the “Sarakshi Netralaya” a State of the Art ophthalmic facility at Nagpur being started by a member of the extended Sankara Nethralaya family, a favourite student and former Consultant at Sankara Nethralaya, Dr. Prashant Bawankule.

We take great pleasure in sharing below a most touching coverage and key observations made by ‘Chief’ to the local press.

Talking to Dr S.S. Badrinath, a global guru of Ophthalmology is an experience that will remain etched in my memory forever. His simplicity and modesty defy his fame and deny people a realization of his worth. Ever since he became a student of Ophthalmology more than 50 years ago, Dr. Badrinath has made the eyeball his lifetime mission. That is why, the interaction with this eminent ophthalmologist does not only involve the eye but also the vision — of life and its expanded circle of excellence.

What triggered the quest for excellence in this man of world repute? Dr. Badrinath was blessed with an awareness right from Day One that excellence is a never-ending journey, without destination and without culmination. It was this point that led him to delve ever deeper and rise ever higher in understanding the complex simplicity of human eye. This awareness also led him to go beyond the machines that dominate ophthalmology today and made him rely more on a super-fine human judgment that transcends the limitations of technology.

Talking to ‘The Hitavada’ on the sidelines of the inaugural of a state-of-the-art eye clinic by one of his favourite student — Dr Prashant Bawankule — Dr Badrinath highlighted the fundamentals of ophthalmology in terms so simple that even a five-year-old can understand. His effort all along was to stress that human eye was a very delicate organ that needed absolute carefulness in handling, so much so that he prohibits people from washing the eye with water. Water can infect the eye, he cautions. Therefore, he advises that eye need not be washed at all with any water but cleansed from outside with closed eyelids.

Still, Dr Badrinath lamented, many people did not care about their eyes properly. When in US, he read a book ‘Archives of Ophthalmology’ that mentioned that only 7 per cent ophthalmologists knew about Diabetic Retinopathy. “It shows how ignorant we are about the eye. Mass awareness about eye care is the need of the hour. Hence, I feel, if people are not coming to hospitals for eye check-ups, hospitals should reach out to them,” said the Padma Bhushan awardee. Dr Badrinath is a legendary figure in Ophthalmology and a Guru to many ophthalmologists in the country. The man’s life is an inspiring tale. His school education began a bit late at the age of seven due to some ailment, but it did not deter him. He lost both his parents in his teens, but went on to complete his medical studies. In 1974, Dr Badrinath had the opportunity to serve his spiritual guru Jagadguru Sri Chandrasekerendra Saraswathi Swamigal of Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam. During the same period once Sri Jayendra Saraswathi, the Sankaracharya of the Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam, had called a group of doctors and appealed them to set up a hospital fully dedicated to eye-care. A determined Dr Badrinath left his private practice and dedicated himself to the cause of a charitable not-for-profit eye hospital in Chennai. Today, it is the world-reputed name — Sankara Nethralaya.

Through Sankara Nethralaya, Dr. Badrinath has started various initiatives to reach out to people especially those from rural areas as they do not have access to hospitals. Sankara Nethralaya has come out with the Mobile Eye Surgical Unit (MESU). There are two ambulances with MESU that have everything including Operation Theatre. These mobile units visit villages, conduct eye check-up camps, and perform safe surgeries, if needed. Of course, the legendary ophthalmologist understands the cost factor of eye-care. “Use of modern technology makes the surgery sutureless and more economical,” adds Dr. Badrinath.

The expert who has been raising the bar of performance consistently, is always looking for taking up new challenges as an opportunity to set new standards. The latest challenge, which he has concentrated upon, is Retinitis Pigmentosa or RP. It is a hereditary condition, which reduces vision. A person suffering from RP develops night-blindness and gradually becomes blind. The cause of RP is still not known. A lot of research is going on worldwide. Transplanting stem-cells and allowing them to replace degenerating cells under the retina is a procedure done in London and New York, but it is very costly. Still, all types of RP are not treated through this therapy. The kind of equipment needed for this therapy are so costly that it is impossible for India to conduct this therapy at this stage, says Dr. Badrinath. But, he is not to be deterred by difficulties. Sankara Nethralaya is doing research on RP and has developed a gene ‘RPE-65’, which helps in knowing if stem cell transplant is useful for a patient suffering from RP. In this era of scientific advancements, hopes are high about transplant of each and every organ. Vision of many has been restored, thanks to corneal tranplant. Can retinal transplant be done? Dr Badrinath replies, “No. Retina is a part of brain and transplant is not possible.”

‘Pesticide, insecticide are retinotoxic’
With advancing age, human beings tend to develop problems related to vision, medically known as Age-Related Macular Degeneration (ARMD). How should this be tackled? Dr S S Badrinath answers, “When I returned from USA, ARMD was still unknown. With enhanced life expectancy, population of old persons too is increasing in India. This increases risk of ARMD. Pesticide and insecticide are retinotoxic, and they contribute to degeneration of vision in old age.”

Raipur hospital follows Sankara Nethralaya
Sankara Nethralaya is not only a world-renowned institution in eye-care, but also a temple of dedication that has inspired others. All the doctors at Sankara Nethralaya work in a dedicated manner. None of them does private practise. Taking a leaf out of Sankara Nethralaya’s dedicated service to people, Raipur-based Aurobindo Netralaya also has doctors like Dr Anand Saxena who do not practise privately. The profit earned by Sankara Nethralaya is rolled into hospital only. When Nani Palkhivala came to know about this, he donated all his shares to the hospital. He wrote in his will that except some household things and a house, all his property be donated to Sankara Nethralaya.

No exercise for eyes please
Some people say there are exercises for eyes that reduce the number of lenses and strengthen eyes. Do these ‘exercises’ really help? ‘NO’, is Dr Badrinath’s answer. “There is no exercise as such for eyes. Even cleaning eyes with tap water is very bad and can harm eyes. The PH value of tap water and that of eye-fluid is not the same,” he advises. The eminent ophthalmologist also advises to watch television from a certain distance with sufficient light in the room. According to him, one should watch television or work on computer for 20 minutes and then take a break to stare elsewhere for 20 seconds at least. This is his ‘Formula 20:20:20’. “Do not watch TV or work on computer when your eyes are tired. Not taking these precautions can damage eyes severely. Eyes blink 20 times in a minute, but this also may get reduced and lead to Dry Eye Syndrome,” Dr Badrinath cautions.

The Indian Express

Young Indian American sibling’s enthralling vocal concert takes compassion to “Lofty Heights”

Lofty Heights

The Srinivasans namely Shri Kumar Srinivasan a senior pharma professional and Srimathi Bhuvana Srinivasan a software programmer, settled for long in the Philadelphia area are great connoisseurs of Carnatic music, another common passion that the couple share is their empathy to Sankara Nethralaya’s cause and philosophy, hailing from Chennai they are well aware of Sankara Nethralaya’s contribution to the cause of eradicating blindness and hold Dr SS.Badrinath in high esteem. The noble couple are regular audience at the various Carnatic programs organized by the Sankara Nethralaya Ophthalmic Mission Trust in the USA and donate liberally at these programs. Their common passion and empathy seemed to have had a positive impact on their daughter Sivaranjani and son Nachiketan Vivek and like true chips of the old block the youngsters decided that their Vocal Arangetram to be held in India would be dedicated to Sankara Nethralaya’s noble cause of eradicating blindness and providing the light of life to the visually impaired.

The vocal Arangetram of Sivaranjani and Vivek,  sishyas of Smt. Kiranavalli Vidyasankar the renowned vocalist and initiator of “Lofty heights’ an initiative to foster awareness, interest and a lifelong involvement in Indian performing arts and culture particularly in the Philadelphia area was held under the auspices of Vidwan Srimushanam Sri Raja Rao and Cleveland Sri V.V. Sundaram at the Music Academy Mini hall, Chennai. Handbills on the programme exhibited prominently in the venue making an earnest appeal to the audience to donate towards the cause of providing cost free eye care to indigent patients by Sankara Nethralaya had a spontaneous effect and raised a handsome amount as donation.

Highly touched by the thoughtful gesture of a young girl barely in her teens and her bubbly younger brother, Dr. SS.Badrinath met the Srinivasans with their children at the Sankara Nethralaya main campus where a beaming and jubilant Sivaranjani handed over the proceeds collected at the Arangetram   directly to him. He spent quality time with the young ambassadors of his cherished cause, enquiring about their studies, their special interest and goals for the future, he expressed his high appreciation to the young performers and presented them with a copy of “Insight” the biography of the institution they had raised funds for. Speaking to the corporate communication department after the meeting, young Sivaranjani expressed that instances of glaucoma in the family and the pioneering role of Sankara Nethralaya in this field about which she learnt from her father prompted her to do something towards its cost free community care services.

Chennaites spread ‘Cancer awareness’ through the ‘Marathon of Hope’

Cancer awareness

While Chennapatnam is cheerfully celebrating its 375th glorious year, the annual Terry Fox run at IIT Madras campus on Sunday, 24th Aug 2014 witnessed a gathering of over 25000 vivacious Chennaites, men, women, youngster and children expressing their solidarity – ‘’to spread awareness on Cancer’’ by participating in the ‘’Marathon of Hope’’, as espoused by Terrance Stanley Fox popularly known as “Terry Fox”, a humanitarian, cancer research activist and a Canadian athlete,  whose noble initiative was brought to Chennai by young Akash Dubey  another champion in the battle against cancer who unfortunately fell victim to it.

The event organized by the Rotary Club of Madras East at the IIT Madras, was flagged off inside the sprawling green campus by Dr.SS Badrinath, Chairman Emeritus, Sankara Nethralaya, Lt.Col. Jasbir Singh and IIT-M Director Dr.Bhaskar Ramamurthi.

Addressing the participants including Consultants, Fellows, PGs, students of the Elite School of Optometry amongst others who had gathered for the 6 km ‘Run for a Cause’, Dr.SS Badrinath observed that research and study on cancer assumed paramount importance in the interest of the Nation and is a noble way of giving back to society. Rotary Club President Shri VGP. Ravidas remarked that it was essential to both raise awareness and channelize funds for cancer research.

The gathering also witnessed emotive and cheerful talks by cancer survivors as ‘Ambassadors’ to the occasion to the thunderous beat of ‘Chennai Drums’.

Posters and banners put up by Sankara Nethralaya sent clear messages on the Retinoblastoma – a cancer of the eye, a sight debilitating ailment occurring largely in children and the research activities of the Vision Research Foundation, to prevent and treat it, all along the 6 km stretch. The Sankara Nethralaya stall put up at the venue was well managed by Sri Harikumar, Sri Arasu Kumar, Ms. Shalini and Sri Arun Kumar who educated the eager participants about Cancer its prevention and treatment.

The impressive event came to a close, with its donations earmarked for Sankara Nethralaya’s cancer research activities.