Doing the best you know, the best you can

by | Apr 1, 2021

A center of excellence is the best thing that can be created in this world. The reason is that it involves several decades of dedicated work, generations of people, and a great purpose that is relentlessly pursued without wavering. And above all, it changes destinies of countless people across generations. Unfortunately, India lacks such centers. There is no Indian university in the top 100 universities of the world and most of our national laboratories are not counted in the global comity of science.

I have been connected with the LV Prasad Eye Institute, Hyderabad, more as an admirer and know Dr G. Nageswara Rao, its founder, and Dr Tara Prasad Das, the second-in-command, as friends. In 1996, when Dr APJ Abdul Kalam started having difficulty in reading, I took him to the Institute. Dr Das checked his eyes, assisted by optometrist Ghanshyam, and he was prescribed glasses. He never had any problem with his eyes thereafter, but that visit created a lifetime bond between him and the Institute. 

When Dr Kalam became the President of India, Dr Das sought Dr Kalam’s help to start an eye hospital in Bhubaneshwar, to where he belonged. A word from Dr Kalam to Chief Minister Naveen Patnaikji made things move fast. I accompanied him on the inauguration day on July 3, 2006. At the time, Dr Kalam said, “This hospital has the great challenge of providing eye care support to Orissa (now Odisha) state where nearly 2 percent of their population is visually challenged as against the national average of 1.4 percent.” Sacrificing his retina research work wherein he is world-renowned, Dr Das stayed there for six years to ensure that systems and people were in place. And today, LVPEI, Bhubaneshwar is a center of excellence in its own right.

Months before he departed, in February 2015, Dr Kalam visited Rajgangpur in Odisha’s Sundargarh district to inaugurate a unit of the LVPEI there. True to its name, this beautiful district has half its area under forest cover and numerous colorful tribes dotting its landscape. But for someone who lacks the gift of vision, of what use is all this? The hospital soon became a hub for needy patients in Raigarh and Jashpur districts of Chhattisgarh, Simdega and West Singhbhum districts of Jharkhand, and the Keonjhar district of Odisha. There was no good eye hospital even in cities like Jharsuguda, Sambalpur, Deogarh and Angul in this region. 

While returning to Delhi, at Bhubaneshwar airport, Dr Kalam hugged Dr Das and said, “I am proud of you.” Who knew it was the last time they would meet! Today, similar to Rajgangpur – LVPEI has established hospitals at Rayagada, Berhampur and Keonjhar; the fifth one in Odisha is being built at Balasore, not very far from the Wheeler Island, now called APJ Abdul Kalam Island. 

I had my cataract surgery done at the LV Prasad Eye Institute, Hyderabad, on May 13, 2015, in the left eye and recently, on March 3, 2021, in the right eye. Dr Das received me at the hospital as a brother would. Both procedures were conducted by Dr Pravin V. Krishna, Chief of Cornea Division at the Institute. Dr Pravin’s father is a Radar scientist who worked for the Electronics Research & Development Establishment (LRDE), Bengaluru. In Defence parlance, ‘E’ is used for explosive and the second letter ‘L’ is used as abbreviation for electronics. Dr Pravin did his medical graduation at Bangalore Medical College and ophthalmology at Guntur Medical College. Living in Hyderabad for the last 19 years, he sees LVPEI as his sanctuary. 

Keep doing your work like a precision machine, in a sterile environment, serving people whom you don’t even know, is how I understand “Tapas,” as mentioned in the Bhagavad Gita, and what we can call “ardor,” in the modern world. People like Dr Nageswara Rao, Dr Tara Prasad Das, and Dr Pravin Krishna are indeed blessed souls who have been sent in this world to relieve pain. Ordinary people and those in the medical profession who opted for making money and collecting toys like big cars, diamond studded watches and gold tipped pens, would never taste the bliss these people feel.

How is a center of excellence created? And more importantly, how does it sustain itself?

For the sincere seekers of answers to these two questions, LVPEI is indeed gold-standard. First comes the land. It must be owned by the hospital. The Hyderabad campus of LVPEI is built over the land donated by LV Prasad Film Studio after their Telugu film Maro Charitra (1978) and its Hindi version Ek Duje Ke Liye (1981) proved blockbusters. Except giving his name to the institute, LV Prasad forbade his successors from interfering in it in any manner. Dr Nageswara Rao approached his non-resident Indian friends for donations in order to create the institution, like Buddha did to create the Sangha. Almost every room bears the name of the donor who helped create it. Later, Dr K. Anji Reddy, founder of Dr Reddy’s Laboratories donated a part of his fortune made in pharmaceutical industry to modernize the building. 

Next come the human resources. You need people for whom serving a patient is a “calling” and not a job. And they must be continuously trained by the best in the world and on the best of the machines. When Dr Rao was elected Chair of the Board and CEO of the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB), he refused to relocate to London and in an unprecedented gesture, IAPB shifted its headquarters to Hyderabad for his entire term in office. Everyone arrives at the Institute at 7 a.m. and attends one hour of learning before reaching their workstations at 8 a.m. Every month, employees are acknowledged for their good work through a peer review system. 

Good medicine rests on Research. What a patient needs must be sensed right by the doctor and delivered right by adapting global technology to the local conditions. Renowned scientist, Dr D. Balasubramanian, chose to work at LVPEI after his retirement from the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology as Director. He told me that it was here that he carried out the best of his work on stem cell biology and its use in restoring lost vision. Seeing him working in his eighties is like meeting a Rishi.  

Finally and of utmost importance is the working capital that is needed to provide world-class treatment and services on a day-to-day basis. The general solution is high tariffs that have given our best hospitals the tag of “five stars.” LVPEI has solved this problem by starting a “Sight Saver” system. Here, people voluntarily pay high tariffs, just as we buy a business class ticket while travelling by air. A part of this tariff is used to subsidize the treatment of poor people, who pay low tariffs and even nothing, in many cases. Like in the aircraft that ensures safe travel for everyone, there is no difference in the quality of the treatment. However, “sight savers” are given other facilities, like the use of a good lounge or parking area near the entrance and other making-you-feel-special mannerisms. 

Why are there not many other hospitals like LVPEI? May be goodness has to always be in limited supply! Not many doctors make it their life’s mission to create institutions that outlive their lives, keeping their families away from ownership, and living and dying while doing their work and serving others. I know many people who are in the Institute since its inception. It is not that they get the highest salaries here, but they feel rich on being a part of this Institute and put this bliss at a premium. 

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35 Comments

  1. Dear Sir Thank you very much for such an exciting & Inspiring blog. Journey of reading, understanding, thinking & analysing the topics you cover in, is a great therapy in calming & aspiring body mind. Reading you is like experiening in class where good teacher Explains subject , Make Note & clears doubt hence the clarity .

    Dear Sir in 2016 GOI decided to place IITs in Top league in global ranking of institutions Under “Project Vishwajeet” , Non of them are in & near top list .We In India talks big vision I think just for complacency And do nothing for it ,We lack enormously on perseverance to follow step to achieve se goal.

    Insight in blog provides universal algorithm to achieve A centre of excellence or If we may say so Institute of Eminence ( GOI is also working for this project I hope they will succeed in this endeavour.)

  2. Dear Sir, Yet another excellent blog! I had read a lot about LV Prasad Eye Institute, regarding their expertise, dedication and discipline. I strongly believe that these qualities flow from top, and I understand Dr Rao was quite dedicated and service minded person. We must thank LV Prasad studio owners for giving that initial support in starting the institute. It is rated very high in India and outside. May this institute continue to serve the all the people in getting them the most important INDRIYA, the eye. SARVENDRIYANAM NAYANAM PRADHANAM. We must bow and solute likes Dr GN Rao, Dr Das and other young doctors who are carrying forward the great legacy.

  3. With an inspiring blog on LVPEI, you have done the best with what you are known as the best, Prof Tiwariji!

    Your passionate words about the “RISHIs” and their “TAPAS” at LVPEI will go a long way in nurturing the Centers of Excellence created by the visionaries of the nation.

  4. I had the privilege of visiting LVPEI along with you Sir on a number of occasions and also a couple of times when Dr Kalam Sir visited the Institute. What struck me the most during my visits apart from the aesthetic look was a feeling of ownership and pride of all the staff working in the Institute. I think the first step for creating a center of excellence is to create an environment wherein everybody feels they are the owners of the Institute, apart from investing in creating good infrastructure and conducting high quality research work rather than just attending to routine hospital oriented activities.

    I vividly remember one of our visits to the Institute along with Dr Kalam Sir who came for a check up. The conversation at that time ranged from latest techniques like laser treatment that were being used for treating eye related issues to creating a center which involved continuous training programs for improving skill set of the staff and in setting a vision for the future of the Institute by carrying out appropriate research. In fact, during a particular visit one of the doctors were explaining to Dr Kalam Sir the significance and meaning of the 20/20 vision term used to express normal visual acuity (the clarity or sharpness of vision) measured at a distance of 20 feet. Much later, when a blue print for the vision of our country was being formulated the document was symbolically named Vision 2020 by Dr Kalam Sir.

    I should thank you Sir for making me a part of this wonderful journey through which I have learnt a lot merely by being present amongst the best of people who have been working with selfless dedication and passion in their respective fields, reinstating that job satisfaction is the most important factor to sustain ones mental well being at workplace.

  5. Thank you for such a wonderful blog Sir! Many from my family have had their eye surgeries performed at LVPEI and their experiences have been excellent all thanks to the seva bhaav, professionalism and world class technology! It is unfortunate that many institutes across India have become purely money making machines with people treating their jobs as duties and nothing else. We need to develop more institutes like L V Prasad to do justice to the kind of resources we have, the talent that we have n for the seva bhaav that is a part of our culture.

  6. Good to hear that you are doing great. Its very correctly said that LVPEI is one of the leading institution not only in healthcare but also premier institute for research. I have visited LVPEI and have been working in collaboration with them for my few research projects on antimicrobial resistance. The work culture , the discipline of scholars, their staffs is quite exemplary. LVPEI is one of the institutes with which young researchers like us wanna be associated. Further, to know that Dr Kalam was associated with the LVPEI is really a new information to me and also great to understand sir vision’s of expansion.

    I am still in touch with senior doctor and researcher there and pursuing my research interests with their cooperation. I still remember when I was new in Hyderabad and looking for hospital collaboration , LVPEI was the first institute who trusted me and understand my research needs and had fully cooperated scientifically by providing all information and details needed to complete my goal.

    LVPEI is one thing which name comes when we talk about Hyderabad, people all over from INDIA with ophthalmology issue likes to be treated there. I hope institutes like LVPEI being a private institute will inspires other people to develop and build something ;like that to pursue health are and clinical research.

  7. Thank you for your piece Prof. Tiwari. LVPEI is a well known hospital and pride of the city of Nizams. Hope and trust that you are recovering well after surgery. It is sad that Indian Universities are not listed in the 100 top Universities in the world. I feel, some of the reasons are the poor international student ratios, low standard and quality research outputs in India.

    We emphasize too much in teaching and preaching in the classroom and faculty did not invest their time in conducting empirical research especially in Social Sciences and publishing it in the well-known SCOPUS Journals. I remember Dr Kalam stating that a nation will grow and prosper if we invest in intellectual research. Interestingly, IItians are celebrated abroad especially in the US but unfortunately, not a single IIT made it to the top 150 rank in the world. Hopefully, National Education Policy 2020 will enable Indian Universities to pull up their socks and compete with the world as equal partners intellectually. Jai Hind.

  8. Prof Tiwari, thank you for this brief manual on how to create Centres of Excellence. I recently heard a snippet of a speech by Dr Kalam, inspiring doctors in another way, by relating an anecdote: the gist was about surrendering their work to God, and allow Him to work through them. Alongside, he also gave the message to parents and teachers to continue to instill in children our glorious culture of Faith and praying to God. Wish there are many more such well-wishers of mankind, who inspire and also teach the right way to live! Your blog is something we look forward to, in both respects.

    The heading of the blog also caught my attention – “Doing the best you know, the best you can” – is in itself a lesson. It is that simple, the road to excellence! In this quest for perfection, the polishing and chiseling would slowly reveal the `Swa-dharma’, as the `unnecessary’ drops off. What better way to self actualization! And besides, how many Centres of Excellence could actually be created this way — in multiple areas — if we could channel our attention also to serving the country, once our own desires have been met to an extent!

    This is the mantra to hold on to, for success — starting from the material-success level, to serving society, to serving the highest Self, through one’s own duty. LV Prasad Eye Hospital is indeed a blessed institution – we have personally experienced its excellence since an episode in 1996. Your write-up gave several behind-the-scenes insights, which are valuable and enriching. Grateful for the same.

  9. Namaskar Arunji, Excellent blog.There is always something to learn from your blog and your books. Thanks for sharing the necessary ingredients for the centre of excellence. I had the privilege of being treated at LVPEI for glaucoma.I was told that for a executive category consult, it will subsidize treatment for four new poor patients (free eye check up and one cataract surgery).

    Since 1996 Practice of medicine has become a business for profit and hardly any money is spent on public health and prevention. At my request they took me to the clinical research. Of late I have come to know their stem cell research. LVPEI -Par excellence! God Bless the team at LVPEI!!

  10. Dear Bhaisab, it’s a wonderful blog you have dedicated to the well deserving LVPrasad Eye Institute. I have heard a lot about this excellent institution. Dr Kalam was a divine soul who would always recognize the worthiness and rightly encourage the project to come up and serve the mankind.

    Your blog praising and dedicated to this institute will encourage and inspire many such projects and those serving the mankind to their best. The world and specially India need many such institutes. Please keep writing, your blogs itself are a great service to humanity. Thanks for sharing.

  11. Technology can’t be confined to serving the rich and powerful. This is the secret of the enormous wealth generated by ICT companies as they made things simple for ordinary people. Computers were around for 20 years but when it turned into a Personal Computer, magic happened. Finally the mobile phone became the computer. Today a typical mobile phone, not the high-end one, is as powerful in computing power as was the Cray Supercomputer in the mid 1980s denied to India by the U.S.

    Another feature of LVPEI is their paperless operation and best medical record system I have ever seen anywhere. They just don’t expect you to bring any records with you. The reception clerk patiently asks your name, date you visited last and other details till you are located in their system and there afterward they start entering about your current visit. I work in this field and can vouch for the investment they made in being so efficient. After COVID-19, the world has entered a new era and the way vaccination is done is a demonstration of a very high-end technology application.

  12. 1. Thank you, prof. Tiwari, for an interesting post delineating the necessary elements of a center of excellence and its management. It is very heartening to learn about the blessed souls, who helped create a world-renowned eye research institute in Hyderabad (LV Prasad Eye Institute). They did not rest with this laurel but replicated it in a poor and developing state like Odisha in India. Naman to these Rishis. India could do with many more such Rishis.

    2. Among the elements of a successful center of excellence, human resources, in my view, is the most important. If an institution has all the necessary infrastructure but lacks human resources of caliber, honesty and integrity, it will fall flat on the academic and research platform. The present policy of reservation and quota system, howsoever it may be socially justified, hinders the growth of an institution. The centers of excellence are not made overnight. Their recognition and acknowledgement comes through the accumulated achievements of their faculty overtime, which create a distinct work culture and character of such institutions. In scientific and educational institutions, merit should be the only criterion in admission and employment. A center of excellence evolves through selfless toil of its scientific, administrative and support staff over generations. It is not created or designated as such overnight by any government agency. No wonder we lack such centers in our country.

    3. We are aware of our ancient world famous institutions such Nalanda and Takshashila universities, which were destroyed by barbarian invaders. The Mughals were interested only in propagating Islam in India. And later, the British were interested only in producing clerks to help them run their administration in the country. Soon after independence, the then prime minister Mr. Jawahar Lal Nehru did promote scientific culture in the country and helped establish various institutions including five Indian Institute of Technology (IITs) in collaboration with foreign institutions. These IITs created a niche for themselves in technological fields globally. Now, we have IITs in each state without proper infrastructure and experienced faculty. The result is that IITs appear to have lost their sheen. Our educational policy and mandate of various government supported institutions and laboratories need complete revamp.

  13. Thank you Arun ji for writing on LVPEI. I VISITED LVPEI First time when Dr Kalam gave a lecture and also to see Dr Kalam after his surgery. Very impressive institution under the leadership of Dr GN Rao. I also met Dr Kalam after the Bhubaneswar inauguration. Dr Tara Prasad is also a great visionary. As you rightly said, all elements Infrastructure, Serving people, Research, Learning and Inspiring Leadership. You can not replicate such institutions.

  14. Dear Arun Ji, your blog is very apt for the social enterprise sector, particularly in the health and wellness area. The social entrepreneur has to balance his concerns for quality health care, cost considerations, viability and sustainability of the enterprise, and its social impact. The social business model should be formulated accordingly. Dr. Venkataswami (Dr. V) of Aravind Eye Care System, Madurai, and Dr. G.N.Rao of LVPEI are pioneers in this field. These Doctors are great heroes of our times. Thank you so much for your inspiring blog.

  15. Arun, your blog about LVPEI is very apt and you brought out their great project and societal contribution very well and personally very touching.

  16. What I would like to add is my observation inside the operation theatre. While patients arrived there via various ‘channels’ of luxury, paying and free category, inside the OT complex of 14 odd theatres, which is the sanctum of the hospital, they were all getting same treatment just as anonymous eyes needed a procedure. That, in my view, makes all the difference.

  17. Nice reading your thoughts and how eloquently you retrace yesteryears to convey a message worthy of all times! Dr. Kalam did possess the uncanny knack of spotting talents and detecting genuine displays of effort and resources. That’s how LVPEI Bhubaneswar happened and am sure with Dr. Kalam’s blessings LVPEI will continue branching out, to provide best possible eye care.

    Most of all, ‘ The Trinity’ as Dr. Kalam had called LVPEI, ARAVIND and SANKARA Nethralaya will grow stronger to edify one another and will never fall apart because nobility is their cornerstone of service. Let many more noble enterprises and initiatives happen as the duo Dr. GN Rao and Dr. TP Das remain the wonderful pair they had always been.

  18. Dear Arun, Your blog on LVPEI is an eye-opener for me. I was there in Hyderabad for more than 5 years, but never used the services of LVPEI as I never required it. I heard its name that it is a very good institute for treatment of eye ailments from my colleagues at SBIRD, Hyderabad. But, I did not know that it is such a marvelous & distinguished institution, providing excellent and the best services to the needy at an affordable price. The good practices to which this institute is adhering, as you have narrated, is simple admirable. Only the best humans can provide best services, they certainly deserve our applause! Thanks Arun for bringing out such a useful and important information to us.

  19. L V Prasad Eye Institute made a very interesting read. Your revelation about the place, the owners and the key persons forming the heart and soul of the group leaves us with a warm feeling. A feeling which lingers on to relish that there still exist people kind enough to cater to the needs of mortals in constant need. That there still are institutes in this materialistic world of today with a heart which bleeds for the poor, the illiterate and the ones without much resources.

    I in fact cherished the idea of collecting fees from the ones who can afford, those who after getting treated willingly contribute whatever they feel like and literary going free for those who just can’t afford at all. That’s a noble deed. The institute has to survive too and so has the entire team associated with it. Funds need to come in to endure and in turn be able to serve mankind. The balancing act is like an icing on the cake. Hats off to the promoter, the team and the concept adopted for revenue generation.

    If the intention is clear, the mind is positive and the heart beats for the needy, optimistic hormones are bound to flow. The world makes a note and there is no dearth of Philanthropists. Like minded people spring up like a spring let loose long after compressed in a box, donations pour in for the right cause, be it in the form of land, men and material, equipment and like. One just needs to have intentions of serving the needy and especially the poor. This is what probably pushed the cart of L.V Prasad Eye Institute. Once proven, multiplying and spreading tentacles of warmth and service to mankind into various states and even countries becomes very easy. The path to tread is well defined and sowing the seeds along the green patch parallel to the road will soon develop into a nice shaded tree lined road – The road to console and help the needy.

    The realization that money alone is not what gives satisfaction and happiness in life… understood earlier… the better. No questions, it’s a must to live good life but it does not guarantee peace of mind or happiness. There exist umpteen examples to substantiate the statement, however let’s accept that the happiness derived out of giving, far exceeds the one on receiving. Blessed are the souls who live to help the needy.

    Let all the billionaires of our country set aside a very small amount of their annual profits to create such like institutes, primarily for health and education – an institute not for profit but profiting the down and needy. Satisfaction derived surely would keep them in good spirits and in turn make them perform better in their parent business.

  20. Well written Arun ji. Yes we need a lot more such centres of excellence from dedicated souls who can resist political pressures and driVen by passion and creative innovation. To start with our education system needs a big change towards practical training rather than bookish training. Thank you, Warm regards.

  21. Dear Arun Ji, Every blog is a lesson to me. 7 am learning time is a great concept. I remember, you invited me to CARE Hospitals at 7 am for a talk. LVPEI is a jewel in crown for Hyderabad health tourism!

  22. Have heard about the quality of service, professionalism and research at LVPEI for more than a decade now. But what mesmerizes is the impact of the overall goodness it is bringing to the society – and this goodness is far beyond the patients that it treats at its campuses. The medical camps conducted at remotest places and Sewa bhavana behind every effort is simply awesome.

    In the times when most corporate hospitals are more preferred for comfort than trust, LVPEI brings forth a model which if replicated across the nation and across specializations can change the entire face of health care in the country.

    May God bless each and everyone behind this great effort! Thanks so much Arunji for dedicating this blog to one of the finest institutes !

  23. Reading your Blog Prof Tiwari, brought back nostalgia. I had been associated with this Institute in various capacities, including at the highest level of management, almost since the time I joined CDFD as its first Director. LVPEI has grown because of the vision of ONE man Nag (Dr GN Rao) as we call him.

    Some of our early work with LVPEI was on Primary Congenital Glaucoma (PCG) a form of childhood blindness, for which we developed a simple method to detect it, once detected the surgeons could prevent this disease by a simple procedure.

    I am delighted that many of our papers published with LVPEI colleagues during my long stay in Hyderabad have become very well cited, leave aside the translational impact these findings have made to Society.

    Congratulations Nag and TP (Dr Tara Prasad Das) and the LVPEI family for letting the LVPEI flag continue to fly high.

  24. Dear Tiwari, Good to know about your bonding with LV Prasad’s Eye Institute. My frind Gupta has an ailment of the eye and they treat him with personalised care- without which his vision would be seriously impaired. There is a personalised attention in every aspect.

    Their sense of belonging and commitment is exemplary. Wish that this kind professional attitude ALONG with the humane touch is present in all and spreads making the world we live in a better place. Best wishes and take care!

  25. Visionaries have the vision that recognizes visionary works. You are a rare person today Prof. Arun Tiwari jee. Your every blog is a piece of diamond. Please keep on inspiring people with your vision. I pray GOD give you healthy life attain goals.

  26. Sir, I am finding your blog unbelievable. I knew Dr Kalam as a missile man, but he did such work of societal good is a new revelation. I like your emphasis on investment in technology and skills and doing substandard and even unsafe medical procedures in the name of charity is indeed criminal.

    The LVPEI model of rich patients paying a little more for their treatment so that patients who cannot pay for their treatment can also be treated is a wonderful model and that is operational, proven and working efficiently over years is commendable. I wish we see more of such hospitals and in other medical specialties. At Kiran Hospital, Surat, this model is implemented.

    My biggest worry is foreign investors capturing Indian hospitals. They charge inappropriate tariffs, for example 500 rupees for an ECG, for which 10 people can have it and take away this money abroad as profits. I don’t know if it can be stopped but what can be done is to have more hospitals like LVPEI so that five-start-hospitals exist like five-star-hotels and no glory is attached to them.

  27. Excellent blog on excellence by an exceptionally talented scientist and author. It takes an excellent person to think of an excellent idea, pursue it with exvellence, hire excellent people, nurture them on a path of excellence and ultimately make the limitless path of excellence a continuous journey rather than a destination.

    LVPEI is one such organisation that embodies excellence from its inception and hence created a mark for itself globally. Salutations to the founders of this organization and to those who supported excellence in science for patient care.

  28. Dear Sir, Greetings! I am feeling blessed to read this article as I got the purpose of my life and want to proceed now with a vision and goal to establish a COE (Center of Excellence) in the field of Healthcare.

    My brother is a M.Ch Plastic Surgeon and expertise in Burn and Plastic Surgery and he discussed with me in past regarding an institute for Burn treatment. His knowledge in this field is very good and now practice as a leading surgeon of Patna. He is also teaching as Assistant Prof. in PMCH, the oldest Medical college of Bihar.

    This article is guiding me to assist him in establishing a Center of Excellence in the field of Burn treatment. Just after reading your article, I discussed with him and promised him to help him out in establishing his dream of serving the suffering humanity by establishing the COE Burn Hospital.

    I am taking this as a challenge and starting from today only on this project. We don’t have Dr. Kalam Sir with us today but for me you are holding the same position as a mentor and good wisher. After 5 years from now, I see myself requesting you to inaugurate the Burn Hospital in Bihar for serving the poor and suffering humanity. I believe, I can do this. Now, I have started living this dream every moment of my life.

    The name of institute would be…
    Kalam-Arun Burn Institute

    Thank you very much for giving me a purpose in my life. Feeling exceptionally blessed being your student. Warm Regards.

  29. Dear Tiwariji, It is so good to hear from you and to know that you are well. Thanks so much for all that you said in this blog. It is so well written. It is the encouragement from friends like you that made what LVP is today. Wish you a safe and healthy passage through this difficult time. Warm regards,

  30. Very nice sir……

  31. Beautiful piece, Bhaisaab! Please write a blog on how to write – simply! (The largely unrecognised connection between uncluttered thinking with writing.) It will help youngsters. Keep healthy and happy!! Warm regards.

  32. What a beautiful blog is this Sir. I would like to add to this the great contribution of Prof G Mohan Rao at the Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru to develop foldable intraocular lenses in India at a fraction of the cost of imported lenses.

    As goes the history, in 1950 English ophthalmologist Sir Nicholas Harold Lloyd Ridley invented the intraocular lens using a plastic polymer, PMMA (Poly Methyl Methacrylate). The only problem then was that the IOLs were hydrophilic in nature leading to eye inflammation. This problem was to coat the IOLs with a hydrophobic transparent thin film, which could repel water and make the IOL implant safe for the eye. As technology evolved, the rigid IOL gave way to a foldable lens and hydrophilic foldable lens which could be stored in water, but it was very expensive.

    Prof Mohan Rao using sophisticated thin film coating methods, such as the state-of-the-art Plasma Coating Unit in their Laboratory, the scientists succeeded in providing an excellent thin film coating of fluorine onto the PMMA lenses.

    Several lakhs of these IntraOcular Lenses are now routinely implanted in patients who come for cataract surgery to the Aravind Eye Hospitals, and he proudly says, “What started off as a research investigation in our laboratory is now a commercial product, and more importantly, IOLs are available in India to patients at one tenth the price of an imported ones.

    I had the good fortune of visiting LVPEI and meeting the team. May their tribe increase.

  33. Sir, This blog about eye care is very inspiring. The best eye hospital of India is Dr. Rajendra Prasad Centre for Ophthalmic Sciences at the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi. Named after the first President of India, this center was established in the year 1967. And LV Prasad Eye Hospital is the next and keeping in view that it is all done by private effort makes it a great achievement.

    India suffered for a long time Eye Camp culture doing enormous damage to many people, mostly poor. There is nothing free and unless surgeries are dome in aseptic conditions using proper equipment, patients may lose vision for life. The concept of rich paying for the poor is indeed brilliant and must be followed in other hospitals also. What Dr TP Das has done for people of Orissa, not many people do. He is a true Karmayogi, not working for his name, wealth or fame but to serve people of the state where he was born. Salute to him.

  34. Sir, I have visited LVPEI as an MBA (Healthcare & Hospital Management) student at Hyderabad University in 2008 and really could not believe how a hospital can be so clean, free of odour and working as a machine. It was crowded but people were moving in a most orderly manner and without any anxiety. I learnt at LVPEI that what upsets a patient most is the discrimination based on financial status in providing treatment. No one cribs about separate entry, good lobby, etch for those who are paying more but when it comes to treatment, quality should be similar and given without differential. Personally, I was enchanted by the painting done by legendary artist MF Hussain for the hospital in its 6th Floor lobby. That was the first time I saw a ‘original’ painting done by a Master artist. Such paintings are sold for lakhs of rupees. I experienced that day how a painting can indeed speak to you. Thank you Sir for writing about LVPEI and bringing my fond memories alive. LVPEI is indeed a model worth emulating in every sense – quality, efficiency and above all elegance. And by the way, picture of Dr TP Das, yours and Dr GN Rao, says all this.

  35. The picture in the blog struck me and I realised that I was present there. It was July 27, 2016, the first death anniversary of Dr APJ Abdul Kalam. We reached there at 6.45 am for the 7 a.m. lecture by you. I was amazed to see how in 5 minutes the 100-seater auditorium at LVPEI got filled and doors were closed at sharp 7 a.m. No seats were reserved for the Director and other senior faculty, and most of them were standing throughout your lecture. I still remember when you said that Dr Kalam lives through the good work of people like Dr GN Rao and Dr TP Das and their hundreds of followers and disciples

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