September 2015

Senior Healthcare professionals find The Sankara Nethralaya Academy`s Hospital Financial Management Course Outstanding

Mr A Mahalingam, Deputy Registrar is briefing about SN Academy
Mr A Mahalingam, Deputy Registrar is briefing about SN Academy

The Sankara Nethralaya Academy conducted a training program on Saturday 26th September 2015 on the topic “Finance for Hospital Administrators” for the Certificate course on Hospital Management

The genesis and milestones of Sankara Nethralaya and The Sankara Nethralaya Academy (TSNA) were detailed by Mr. A Mahalingam, Deputy Registrar, TSNA when he presented a virtual tour of both the institutions functioning under the visionary leadership of Dr. SS Badrinath – The Founder – The Sankara Nethralaya Academy and Chairman Emeritus – Sankara Nethralaya, Medical Research Foundation.

Shri PR Ravindran is lecturing the participants
Shri PR Ravindran is lecturing the participants

Shri P.R. Ravindran, a Chartered-cum-Cost Accountant and former Chief General Manager of Sankara Nethralaya, took the session for three hours on the topic, to enable doctors, managers and executives in hospitals.

• Appreciate the role of and understand the implications of finance on corporate/institution’s activities.

• Understand financial statements and analyze them.

• Be in a better position to discuss the subject with finance managers in their organization.

The Program mainly covered, understanding financial statements like, Balance Sheet, Profit & Loss Account, Ratio Analysis for review of Performance, Working Capital Management, Cash flow Management and Basic principles of Costing.

The methodology of the Programme mainly focused on real life examples, like Apollo Hospitals Financial Statements and a lively case study on Costing of a Surgery.

Finally the session was concluded with tips on Personal financial planning for the benefit of each individual Personal financial planning is an important necessity for each one of us who seeks financial control of our affairs and wishes to create wealth.

It is a process of assessing your financial situation, identifying your financial goals, determining your objectives and formulating a plan to achieve them in a most professional way. It involves adopting suitable plans or tactics to combine an individual’s or family’s financial goals, including risk management, investment planning, retirement planning, and tax planning.

It is all about knowing where in life do you stand financially and taking control of it and drive it in the proper direction to reach the destination easily and with in the targeted time.

Defining the objectives is the focus of planning and making a strategy to achieve the predefined objective is the root of planning. It is the process of keeping your goals and aims in mind, select a financial product or investments in other assets that fits in your expectations and finally helps you in achieving your goals as desired by you.

Sankara Nethralaya conducts a camp for the revival of ‘vision’ as its tribute and homage to a great ‘Visionary’

Former President of India Bharath Ratna APJ Abdul Kalam was a great admirer and well wisher of Sankara Nethralaya, a man deeply committed to the cause of ‘Research’ and its benefits accruing to the public at large, the eminent man of science had made laudatory observations of its intensive research and hailed it as a ‘Temple of the Eye’. The institution he had reposed his faith, paid a befitting tribute and homage to the missile man by conducting a cost free eye screening and ‘on the spot’ cataract surgery camp deploying the most advance ‘Mobile Eye Surgical Unit’ (MESU) at India’s rocket city Sriharikota, under the aegis of the Satish Dhawan Space Research Centre. A Valedictory function of the camp was held on the 13th of September 2015 with Dr. P.Kunnihikrishnan, Director, Satish Dhawan Space Centre, gracing the occasion as the Chief Guest and attended by Dr. SS.Badrinath. Founder and Chairman Emeritus , Sankara Nethralaya, Dr.Vasanthi Badrinath, Shri Raja Reddy, Controller, SDSRC, Srimathi.T.Haritha, Junior Civil Judge, Sullurpet and other eminent people from the neighbourhood.

Speaking on the occasion Dr. Kunnihikrishanan observed that the Mobile Eye Surgical Unit is a marvel of technology and its invaluable service to the local population reiterated his institution’s philosophy of being not only a space technology and research institution but a very humane institution in constant interface and service to the local people. Srimathi T.Haritha Sub-Judge, Sullurpet observed that the yeoman service rendered by Sankara Nethralaya and the MESU reiterated her faith in the service orientation of the medical profession. Breaking the good news that the MESU has recently received the sanction and approval of the Union Health Ministry to operate on a nationwide basis, Dr SS.Badrinath used the occasion to explain that the real worth of the hard work, research and cost that has gone into the designing of MESU would become worthwhile and its relevance to society would become a reality only if corporate bodies and institutions across the nation support its endeavours by adopting it as their Corporate Social Responsibility and operate it in their regions, he expressed his willingness to impart training to the outdoor teams of any organization planning to embark on such camps. He expressed his sincere thanks to SHAR for the kind hospitality and arrangements, the outdoor team manning the MESU camp, the local villagers for reposing their faith and turning up in good numbers. He used the occasion to acknowledge his sincere gratitude to Dr. Satya Atluri the World renowned Mechanical and Aerospace scientist and well wisher of Sankara  Nethralaya settled in the USA hailing from Gudivada, for his generous support of cost free community ophthalmology services back in his home State of Andhra Pradesh and how it has helped in conducting such camps and also contributed towards setting up the Sri City Sankara Nethralaya at Nellore, he made an emphatic appeal to the residents of Sullurpet to support the MESU by donating to the cause of taking advanced Cataract surgery, right to the doorsteps of poor patients living in the most remote regions and help it to reach more and more backward regions of the State and revive the eye sight more number of people.

A total of 606 were screened and 120 of them underwent on the spot cataract surgery at the camp while a total of 380 were referred to Sankara Nethralaya’s base hospitals at Sri City and Chennai.

Sankara Nethralaya takes a critical overview at the most common cause of visual impairment in the country.

As an ophthalmic institution in the forefront of eradicating blindness and reviving the ‘Light of Vision’, Sankara Nethralaya has always been concerned about the high incidence of Cataract, the leading cause of blindness in the country and lack of awareness about it among the general public. While Cataract removal surgery is among the most simple of ophthalmic processes and Cataract caused blindness is the most easily reversible form of blindness, there are many aspects of Cataract which are blurred, grey and unclear quite typical of the symptoms the ailment manifests itself.  Sankara Nethralaya is engaged in combating the illness everyday through the large number of Cataract removal surgeries carried out at its centers, Cataract screening at its various outdoor camps including ‘On the spot Surgeries’ carried out by the Mobile Eye Surgical Unit (MESU). It is also engaged in focused research in finding out the cause of the disease including the possibility of delaying its onset and prevention.

Sankara Nethralaya recently conducted a workshop titled ‘Cataract Catalyst 2015’ as a continuing medical education initiative to share knowledge and expertise among the eye care professionals from different sub-specialties of ophthalmology to tackle the complex situations arising in Cataract surgery and evolve best practices in Cataract care, which is not currently governed by definitive protocols, through a vibrant exchange of knowledge and hands on experience. The workshop evoked enthusiastic response from a cross section of ophthalmologists; the highlights of the CME were a potpourri of panel discussions, talks from specialists across the city and poster presentations, a debate on current ophthalmic practice and a quiz. The CME was attended by 160 ophthalmologists and witnessed interactive participation by all attendees. There was a video and poster presentation competition also. The best video was awarded to Dr. Seema from Arvind Eye Hospital, Pondicherry and the best poster was won by Dr. Vijeyenthi /Dr Rajesh P S from Sankara Nethralaya for the study on surgeries done in the MESU camps.

Association of Healthcare Providers of India and, ACME Consulting launch critical NABH entry level program at Sankara Nethralaya


In an effort to emphasize the need for Medicare quality to be under the structured framework stipulated by the national Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare providers (NABH), the Association of Health care providers in India (AHPI) along with ACME consulting, the well known providers of  advisory services to service organisations in the area of quality improvement, particularly health care launched an entry level program for NABH accreditation for small and medium sized hospitals at a brief function held at the Sri VD Swami Auditorium, Sankara Nethralaya on 11th September 2015.

Welcoming the gathering, Senior General Manager Sankara Nethralaya Smt Akila Ganesan underlined that “Quality was the only thing” that needed adherence to, at all levels, to put a perfect, system driven procedure to practice.

Addressing the gathering Dr.Giridhar J Gyani, Director General, AHPI stressed the need for a structured framework like NABH to reduce medical errors that are currently at a whopping  figure of 5.2 million annually, in the country. He hailed hospitals across Tamil Nadu that were in the ambit of NABH and pointed the need for all hospitals, whether big or small, to imbibe quality consciousness through such procedures. He had a high word of praise for the State Government’s Health schemes and stressed the importance of being linked only to Health care providers under the NABH entry level program/ NABH accredited hospitals to ensure quality of Medicare and service.

The event witnessed honouring of Dr Mala Raj, Managing Director of FIRM Hospitals, Anna Nagar for being the First Hospital in Chennai to be Accredited under the NABH Entry Level Standards. While Col Rajeev Mannali, Narayani Hospital, Dr V. Thiagarajan, BM Hospital, Ms Gayatri Sandeep, Seethapathi Hospital, shared their experiences in implementing the NABH Entry Level Standards,  Mr C.S.Ramakrishnan, Chief Operating Officer, Mr Suresh Shenoy,   Vice President, ACME Consulting spoke elaborately on the NABH Entry Level Standards & Implementation steps and AHPI’S Accreditation Assistance Program.Chairman Emeritus, Sankara Nethralaya Dr. SS Badrinath, wished the program a great success and congratulated the participants who evinced keen interest to join the Entry level program of NABH.

The Hindu

The Sankara Nethralaya Academy conducts a niche session touching on the legal aspects of healthcare delivery on 12th September 2015.

A Mahalingam, Deputy Registrar, The Sankara Nethralaya Academy, honouring the Speaker Shri D Samuel Abraham, Senior Law Officer, Christian Medical College, Vellore.
A Mahalingam, Deputy Registrar, The Sankara Nethralaya Academy, honouring the Speaker Shri D Samuel Abraham, Senior Law Officer, Christian Medical College, Vellore.

Addressing the delegates, A Mahalingam, Deputy Registrar, The Sankara Nethralaya Academy, Unit of Medical Research Foundation, Chennai observed that this unique was intended to focus on challenges and issues in Health care sector and their related legal management for effective and smooth functioning of the institution.

Delegates at the Medico Legal Issues in Healthcare and Laws Related to Healthcare Administration Session

To precisely meet this objective of issues relating to legal aspects, medical negligence, consumer protection, Sankara Nethralaya Academy, conducted a session on “Medico Legal Issues in Healthcare and Laws Related to Healthcare Administration on 12th Sepetember 2015.

With the rapid emergence of corporatisation of health care sector, extremely demanding patient segment and insurance providers for health care management, it has become imperative now than ever before for those related to health, medicine, hospitals and hospital administrators, NGOs, Trust operating hospitals to adhere and execute appropriate policy matters with respect to medical care.

Speaking on the occasion, Shri D Samuel Abraham, Senior Law Officer, Christian Medical College, Vellore said it was critical for any hospital management to be equipped with expertise on laws governing medical practice, particularly to handle medico legal cases.

The power packed sessions included topics on “Medical Negligence and its consequences on the reputation of hospital”, “Informed Consent and its role in consumer cases”, “Application of Consumer Protection Act to Hospitals”, “Importance of Medical records”, “Medico legal cases and role of Medical profession”, “HR issues in Hospital Administration” handled by veterans Mr.D. Samuel Abraham, Senior Law Officer, who not only offered his rich knowledge and expertise with ease to the avid listeners, but also encouraged and welcomed interactive participation.

This session attendances included senior Administrative officers and Medical professionals and Healthcare Management Stuents from prestigious institutions

The utterly satisfied participants remarked that the sessions enabled better understanding of the nuances on the subject to handle subtle issues with real time scenarios from the experts, who delivered maximum content on the topics within short span of time.

Senior Sankara Nethralaya Consultants play critical role in imparting the finer nuances of teaching ophthalmology and evaluating its outcome.

The program was inaugurated by Dr Mohan Rajan, Chairman ARC-TNOA.
The program was inaugurated by Dr Mohan Rajan, Chairman ARC-TNOA.

The International Council of Ophthalmology (ICO) and All India Ophthalmological Society’s (AIOS) Academic Research Committee (ARC) conducted nationwide workshops as part of their endeavour towards enhancing the quality of imparting ophthalmology as a subject and streamlining teaching and evaluation methodologies to bring about greater uniformity and impact through compliance to norms.  The Tamil Nadu chapter of the program was held under the aegis of the Tamilnadu Ophthalmic Association and spearheaded by Senior Vitreo-Retinal consultant Dr. Pukhraj Rishi and Dr. Meenakshi Swaminathan, Senior Paediatric ophthalmologist and Director-Academics, Sankara Nethralaya was selected as the ‘Lead Instructor’, the program was conducted on 23rd August 2015 at Sankara Nethralaya main centre and was the first such workshop in South India. A total of 32 participants attended the meet.

Practical Session at the Teachers in Ophthalmology Workshop
Practical Session at the Teachers in Ophthalmology Workshop

The eagerly awaited academic program was inaugurated by Dr. Mohan Rajan, Chairman Academic Research Committee- Tamil Nadu Ophthalmic Association at 9:00am sharp. Dr. Renuka Srinivasan, HOD (Ophthalmology), JIPMER contributed significantly to the proceedings by sharing her long and vast experience in teaching and training. The participants evinced great interest in the highly interactive group activity being conducted at the program. It was a project-based learning, with different tasks being assigned to each group and the groups had to make a presentation within the allotted time. Dr. Katta from Hyderabad shared his thoughts about the ‘Misnomers’ in Ophthalmology. There was an interesting discussion on adapting the International Council of Ophthalmology’s norms to Indian conditions and standards. Dr. Venkatesh from AECS, Pondicherry suggested focusing and strengthening the training being offered currently in wet-labs. The representative from the sponsors, MS Appasamy Associates, spoke about ‘Ergonomics in the Operating Room’ with an interesting possibility of customized settings to suit the preference of individual surgeons.

Overall, the delegates were very appreciative with the academic content and the logistic arrangements made by Sankara Nethralaya the host institution and highly satisfied with the workshop and shared their highly positive feedback The success of the program could be gauged by the fact that there was a good demand by the participants for holding such workshops every year, with some of the delegates expressing their desire to make a repeat attendance. Pursuant to the successful workshop in Chennai, Dr. Meenakshi and Dr. Pukhraj Rishi the ARC representative for the South Zone visited Narayana Nethralaya, Bangalore to lend their expertise to the Teacher’s in Ophthalmology’ workshop being held there, by sensitizing teachers to better teaching and evaluation methodologies including the use of technology. Dr. Meenakshi played the role of Lead Instructor on behalf of the ICO for the Bangalore workshop too.

Slogans raised in support, message placards and a sunny walk on the beach reiterate Sankara Nethralaya’s commitment to eye donation.

Walk for Vision – 2015

Sankara Nethralaya’s eye donation awareness creation initiatives in lieu of ‘Eye Donation Awareness Fortnight’ being observed between August 25th– Sept 8th which took the form of lectures and a human chain rally came to a grand finale with the ‘Sankara Nethralaya Walk for Vision – 2015 on the 8th of September being observed as ‘National Eye Donation Day’. The walk generated enthusiastic response and a large gathering of 1,500 participants consisting working professionals, students etc converged at the Gandhi Statue at the Marina well in advance of schedule. Celebrity Chief Guest Kala master gave a brief talk on the need for eye donation and flagged off the walk at 9:00am, she joined fellow walkers raising their voice and placards for the cause of eye donation as they marched purposefully along the service road abutting the beach unmindful of the hot Sun. The walk concluded at the Kannagi Statue at Triplicane after which Dr T.S.Surendran, Vice-Chairman,Sankara Nethralaya gave a brief talk on the need for eye donation to overcome the current shortage of cornea needed for transplant surgeries, Shri Lakshminarayanan, Social Worker, CU Shah Eye Bank,Sankara Nethralaya also addressed the gathering and briefed the press on the bleak current scenario in terms of need and availability of cornea for transplant and the purpose of the walk. The awareness creation event conducted jointly with the Rotary Club received financial support from the Central bank of India, while ‘Bisleri’ the popular packaged water brand and ‘Goldwinner’ the leading edible oil company demonstrated their solidarity with the cause by providing free water bottles and sun caps to the participants.

Sankara Nethralaya lives up to ‘Eye Donation Fortnight’ with diverse activity

Eye Donation Fortnight

As an eye care institution in the forefront of creating awareness on the need for eye donation to prevent avoidable blindness since its inception, Sankara Nethralaya lived up to the spirit of ‘Eye Donation Fortnight’ being observed between August 25th-Sept 8th with great enthusiasm. The events marking the observation of the same were spearheaded by Shri G.Lakshminarayanan, Social Worker, CU Shah Eye Bank, Sankara Nethralaya Main campus. The fortnight long initiatives got off with talks on the need for eye donation by the Eye Bank Social Worker, addressing workmen at the Ford India and Hyundai Motor Companies, the former reciprocating by making available Sankara Nethralaya’s eye donation pledge forms online to its employees through its website, this was followed by a talk on the subject and the technicalities of eye harvest, preserving the cornea etc to the nurses of the Vijaya Hospital. Shri Lakshminarayanan was assisted in his efforts by Dr.Deviyani, Cornea Fellow who clarified the more complex medical related queries raised by the audience.

Sankara Nethralaya joined hands with the Rotary Club of Mount and conducted a highly successful human chain rally at the DG Vaishnav College, Arumbakkam, participated enthusiastically and in large numbers by students holding placards espousing the cause of eye donation, senior office bearers of the Rotary club including Rotarian Dr.R.Sriram, Major Dr.M.Venkatraman, Principal of the college, Srimathi Akila Ganesan, Senior General Manager, Sankara Nethralaya and her colleagues. The press was briefed by the senior participants at the end of the event. Lion S.N.Harinarayan, President ‘Sight First’ and long time friend and champion of Sankara Nethralaya‘s awareness creation endeavours in eye donation conducted a highly educative and absorbing meeting at the Conference Hall of the Sri V.Venugopal Block, Sankara Nethralaya main campus on the 5th of September 2015. The meeting was attended by senior office bearers of the Lions Club International Dist 324 A1, Lion Harinarayanan and Shri G.Lakshminarayanan, Social Worker of the CU Shah Eye bank addressed the gathering with in-depth talks on the need for eye donation and the abysmal demand and availability ratio prevailing today. This was followed by interesting talks by the senior Lion members assembled on the occasion on the causes of eye ailments, measures to be adopted, need  to educate the general public on the need for eye donation etc. The highly interesting meeting ended with a question and answer session and a visit to the CU Shah Eye Bank.

The Sankara Nethralaya Academy conducts ‘Teacher’s Day’ with great reverence and enthusiasm

Mrs Akila Ganesan, Senior General Manager – Sankara Nethralaya cum  Registrar of SN Academy honouring the Chief Guest Dr. Susan Edward Joseph Former Principal of the Presidency Girl’s Higher Secondary School, Chennai
Mrs Akila Ganesan, Senior General Manager – Sankara Nethralaya cum Registrar of SN Academy honouring the Chief Guest Dr. Susan Edward Joseph Former Principal of the Presidency Girl’s Higher Secondary School, Chennai

In India, 5th September is celebrated as Teachers Day as a mark of tribute to the contribution made by teachers to the society. It is the birthday of a great teacher Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, who was a staunch believer in education and was a well-known diplomat, scholar and the President of India and above all, a great Teacher.

Teacher’s day was celebrated with pomp and splendour at The Sankara Nethralaya Academy( TSNA), a unit of Medical Research Foundation, Chennai at its Vanagaram Campus. It was a day of gratitude and remembrance towards all the teachers who have shaped our lives

The Program started with a mellifluous invocation by Senior Lecturer Dr S Vandhana who invoked the Gods and praised the teachers through Vedic hymns. This was followed by a soulful rendition by the students of Sankara Nethralaya Academy who invoked Lord Ganesha for his blessings and divine Grace

Welcoming the gathering and the Chief Guest Dr. Susan Edward Joseph, MSc, M Ed,M Phil, Ph D , Former Principal of the Presidency Girl’s Higher Secondary School, Chennai, Mr. A Mahalingam, Deputy Registrar, explained the service orientation of Sankara Nethralaya under the visionary leadership of the Living Legend Padma Bhushan Dr. SS Badrinath. He briefed on the educational facilities and collaborations of the academy, for offering a purposeful education to the society, he also highlighted that the healthcare service sector is booming and that there are abundant career opportunities here, which he explained has made many institutions like the Sankara Nethralaya Academy to offer specialized courses in this sector to prepare students aspiring to be a part of this high growth industry.

Mrs Akila Ganesan, Senior General Manager – Sankara Nethralaya and  Registrar of the SN Academy welcomed the Chief Guest Dr. Susan Edward Joseph the most distinguished ‘Chief Guest’ and most worthy Teacher on the occasion, she dwelt in-depth on the terms Guru which is coined by Gu and Ru.

She highlighted that Dr. Susan has donned several roles in an eventful career, she started as a Teacher, went on to become a headmistress at the Presidency Girls High School, became the Assistant Professor at the Holy Cross Home Science College, Tuticorin and the Divisional Education officer. Dr Susan left an indelible mark in every assignment that she handled, she was conferred the ‘Best Teacher Award’ for her high quality of work and the 65 schools under her showed, when she served as the district education officer, registered  all round progress.

Delivering the Chief Guest’s address Dr Susan Edward Joseph had a special word of thanks to the teachers for imparting knowledge to all, she shared interesting anecdotes from her student days and exhorted the students to bring glory and fame to their teachers, she extolled the virtues of the teaching profession and appealed to teachers to take active part in character building of their students.

A proud member of the faculty receiving the ‘Teacher’s Day’ memento
A proud member of the faculty receiving the ‘Teacher’s Day’ memento
Group Photo of students and faculty with the Chief guest
Group Photo of students and faculty with the Chief guest

All teachers who are part of the SN Academy were felicitated on the occasion and the program ended with a Vote of Thanks by Mrs C G Sreedevi, Manager SN Academy and a group photo session

Director of Sankara Nethralaya’s Academics division enlightens readers of leading national daily on the options and scope of Ophthalmology as a study and a profession

DR Meenakshi Swaminathan

Meenakshi Swaminathan, director, academics, Medical Research Foundation – Sankara Nethralaya, speaks with Sangeetha Nambiar about ophthalmology as a study and career option.

Ophthalmology is a branch of medicine that involves the diagnosis and treatment of eye-related ailments. Over the years, the field of ophthalmology has seen much advancement, including developments in cataract surgery and increased precision in surgeries.

Undergraduates do not gain much exposure to the subject of ophthalmology. Hence, it is important for them to specialise in the subject. Ophthalmology is taught as a postgraduate-level course to train students to become specialists in medical treatment, complex microsurgery and other aspects of eye care. Those who wish to make a career in this field can opt for an MS, a Diplomate of National Board (DNB), or a diploma in ophthalmic medicine and surgery (DOMS). The All India Institute of Medical Sciences offers an MD in ophthalmology as well.

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