A new cancer treatment facility was inaugurated in Kolkata on Thursday, promising to reduce the gap between the number of patients and hospital beds. HCG EKO Cancer Centre was flagged off at New Town with 88 beds and cutting-edge facilities like re-radiation, total body irradiation, radiosurgery, iodine therapy and bone marrow transplant. This comes close on the heels of 250 new beds at the Tata Medical Centre that were added last February.
Three weeks ago, chief minister Mamata Banerjee announced a new cancer treatment centre at SSKM Hospital.
Kolkata has a mere 1,000 beds for 50,000 cancer patients of the state, which includes 15,000 new patients every year. Set up by HCG in partnership with EKO Diagnostics Are Pvt Ltd, the centre aims to provide treatment aided by the latest technology that will reduce the duration of hospital stay, according to HCG Enterprises Ltd chairman & CEO BS Ajaikumar.
“We believe in collaborating with known partners at the forefront to help millions win over cancer. This centre will provide it the most comprehensive cancer care in West Bengal, also marking our footprint in the eastern region. We believe in providing value-based cancer care by treating the right way, the first time. The HCG EKO centre is bridging the gap to provide significant clinical benefits and making it accessible to the people of West Bengal and neighbouring states,” said Ajaikumar.
The last significant addition to cancer treatment in Kolkata, prior to the augmentation of beds at Tata Medical Centre, was the new unit of the Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Cancer Research Institute set up at New Town in 2018. Prior to that, Apollo Gleneagles Hospital had started its cancer unit in 2010.
An average cancer patient in Kolkata has to wait eight weeks for a surgery at the state’s leading hospital, the Institite of Post-Graduate Medical Education and Research, which again underlines the importance of the promised cancer unit at SSKM Hospital.
A bed-patient discrepancy also contributes to the situation in which around half of Bengal’s 50,000 cancer patients at any given time are forced to go to other states for treatment, say cancer specialists.
Source: Times of India