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HealthCare Global Enterprises Ltd, headquartered in Bangalore is South Asia's largest Cancer Care Network.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Hope, dignity and positivity in the face of adversity

Pink Hope & HCG Foundation
cordially invite you to the 1st Anniversary Celebrations of PinkHope Patient Support Group

Chief Guest: Abhinaya Sharade Smt. Jayanthi

Date : July 30th, 2010 (Friday)

Time : 3 pm

Venue : Rooftop, HCG Tower 2
#8 P.Kalingaro Road
Sampangiram Nagar
Bangalore - 560027

Program Details:

  • Recap of last year's activities
  • Sharing of experience by survivors
  • Address by Dr. B.S.Ajaikumar, Chairman HCG
  • Speech by Chief Guest
  • Panel discussion
  • Vote of thanks


Monday, July 26, 2010

Swasti Art Gallery - An Initiative by HCG Foundation!

As art becomes big business, it is not surprising to find art galleries springing up everywhere in Bangalore; but when one finds a gallery that is somewhat different, it is rather intriguing! I met young Veena Narsasetty, an artist and sculptor, who was exhibiting for a show at a gallery called ‘Swasti’.

(Naseeruddin Shah at HCG, Swasti Art Gallery)

Dr. Bhagya Ajaikumar, decided to start Swasti art gallery as a different initiative in June 2007. "A traditional hospital setting is that of white, sterile walls- sterile in every sense," says Bhagya. The spaces and walls where health professionals, caregivers and patients spend a lot of time, is not an inviting setting. It would be good, Bhagya thought, to change this, and let the therapeutic value of art have its soothing and tranquilising effect.

The idea further morphed into the notion of having an art gallery, rather than just hanging art works on the walls as some hospitals do. This was why Bhagya named the gallery ‘Swasti’, which loosely translates to ‘well-being’. "There are many young and talented artists in Bangalore, looking for an outlet to showcase their work," says Sushmitha, the curator of HCG-Swasti.

Adds Bhagya, "I thought it would be a win-win situation if helping the artists helped cancer patients, too." The art gallery is located opposite the visitors' waiting area, and has a well-lit space.

Swasti started with a showing of 8 artists and sculptors in June 2007. Of these, one was actually an end-stage cancer patient; Jerome Francis exhibited his paintings, among them a sensitive portrayal titled 'Waiting for Spouse's Return' (surely an universal phenomenon!) "Jerome is no longer with us," says Sushmitha, "but his work was very popular."

Two more shows were curated; the second one was called ‘Spectrum’, and actor Naseeruddin Shah inaugurated it. The third show was inaugurated by Jasu Rawal and G Subramanian, two of the artists who are also exhibiting at the present (4th) show, 'Pink Spirit'.

‘Pink Spirit’ was inaugurated by actor Shabana Azmi. Apart from Rawal and Subramanian, other artists exhibiting are: Pushpa Dravid, Rani Rekha, Ramdas Adyanthaya, Shan Re, Soumya Chavan, S G Vasudev, Bhagya Ajaikumar herself, and one sculptor, Veena Narasasetty. All the artists have offered their work to support the treatment and care of breast cancer, which is symbolised by a pink ribbon. The exhibition has been on since October 4th, and will go on until the end of November.

Some Art Pieces at the Gallery:

The running of the gallery is taken care of by the HCG foundation, explains Sushmita. "We do not charge the artists anything for exhibiting here." Whenever an artwork is sold, half the proceeds go towards the HCG foundation, for the care of the breast cancer patients. This is a win-win situation, with both the professional artist and the sick patient benefiting.

"We hope that the gallery will soon be self-sustaining," adds Sushmitha. "As of now, we are building up a list of artists, but do not turn away anyone who hears of us and approaches us to show their work." The artists have to take back their unsold works, as right now, there is no space for storage. "But we hope to make some space, and then, perhaps, we can buy the artists' works as well, and be invested in art, too," says she.

Veena is very happy to be associated with this show. Two of her brass sculptures, ‘Breeze’ and ‘Relaxing’, both depicting female figures, are on display, and she is content to have them seen by many different kinds of people who walk into the gallery, and hopes that both of them will be sold before the exhibition ends.

Are there any other such initiatives in Bangalore? "Not to my knowledge," says Veena, "Gallery Sumukha in Wilson Garden is located within a hospital compound, but is not part of the hospital as Swasti is."

Bhagya Ajaikumar has successfully turned the hospital, associated with sickness, to one of healing, where art is given space to play a therapeutic role, and result in a viable business model as well."Our intention is to have a permanent show here, that patients and visitors can both visit and benefit from," she says. "Our focus will continue to be on upcoming artists, and to select works that will act in a therapeutic way upon the viewer."

Let's wish this unusual gallery every success; it has turned the idea of a hospital from a place of illness to a place of healing! Such a positive turnaround deserves every encouragement.

Swasti Contemporary Art Gallery
Healthcare Global Enterprises (HCG)
#8, Kalinga Rao Road, Sampangi Ram Nagar
Bangalore 560027
Tel 91 80 4020 6000/ 4020 6400
email: swastigallery@gmail.com

Stop Smoking, Add Life to Years Program

On the occasion of World No Tobacco Day 2010, HealthCare Global Enterprises (HCG) - South Asia’s largest cancer care network and Rotary Southwest Club partnered and kicked off “Stop Smoking, Add Life to years” campaign as part of its cancer prevention drive. The campaign was launched by Mr. Nagabharana, Film Director and Ms. Ragini Dwivedi, Actor in the presence of Dr. Shekhar Patil, Medical Oncologist, HCG and Rtn. Bhagwan SK, and a guide on the crusade theme was also released.

As part of the campaign HCG would offer an integrated de-addiction programme that combines well proven modules of psychotherapy, relaxation, diet and yoga that helps in managing addiction successfully. The 8 days de-addiction programme (June 5, 2010 to June 13, 2010) would be conducted under the guidance of Dr Raghavendra Rao, Consultant HCG – Cancer Prevention Program.

Sharing his thoughts on the World No Tobacco Day Dr. Shekhar Patil, Medical Oncologist, HCG, said, “Worldwide prevalence of smoking is around 1.30 billion. Smoking causes 4.40 lakh deaths each year and it is estimated that ban of tobacco worldwide would reduce the incidence of cancers by 46%”.

Against this background, Dr Raghavendra Consultant HCG - Cancer Prevention Program said “We are keen to champion the ‘Stop Smoking, Add Life to Years’ campaign and thereby prevent various tobacco related disorders that afflict people from all walks of life”. According to him the scientifically designed de-addiction programme would motivate and improve individual’s will power and also help them to successfully cope with withdrawal syndrome.

Actor Ragini Dwivedi, stressed on the number of women smokers increasing day by day. She said “A lot of women start the habit at a young age primarily during their teens and continue as they feel; by smoking they exemplify confidence and exuberance, which is not true, they do not realize the fact that all this only leads to various health risks, like cancer, heart disease, infertility etc ….

(L-R: Rtn. Bhagavan S.K, Film Director Sri. Nagabharana, Dr. Raghavendra, Dr. Shekar Patil, Actor Ragini Dwivedi)

Rtn. Bhagavan S.K.- President Elect, Rotary Southwest said “We have partnered with HCG for a good cause, as the habit of smoking is alarmingly increasing amongst youngsters of today”.

“Taking a leaf out of ancient Indian principles, HCG has devised a unique program that combines yoga, psychotherapy and nutrition to overcome such habits” he added.

The de-addiction programme would essentially consist of breathing exercises, asanas, pranayama and relaxation techniques. The yoga breathing techniques not only helps cleanse the respiratory system of toxins but also assists best when individuals crave for a cigarette. Likewise, the asanas help to develop inner awareness, while pranayama instills mental calmness & improve lung function and relaxation techniques facilitate in managing day to day stress.


Activities by HCG in the past - ABCC Oration

Organized by: HealthCare Global
Date : February 6th, 2010

The 2nd Asian Breast Cancer Congress is one of the most important gatherings in Asia-Pacific region, focusing on the current researches, treatments and cures pertaining to breast cancer. ABCC 2010 was organized by HealthCare Global Enterprises Ltd., in association with the American Society of Breast Disease, the American Society of Breast Surgeons and the European School of Oncology. The theme of this year congress is “Fostering International Collaborations”. It was held with the intention to bring together leading breast cancer physicians, surgeons, gynecologists and other medical professionals with interest in the field, to discuss and debate crucial issues in breast cancer therapy. Besides comprehensive educational sessions, the congress will also showcase presentations on multi-disciplinary research on breast oncology and other related topics. The 2nd Asian Breast Cancer Congress will serve as a key forum encouraging cross cultural interaction and understanding for the better treatment of the patients with breast cancer.

The main objective of this congress is to advance the quality of breast cancer treatment and find answers to unsolved problems as they relate to the context of the developing world.

The theme of the meeting was "Fostering International Collaboration" provides an opportunity for oncologists from Asia to meet in a smaller, more intimate forum and develop connective tissue with the leading experts in the field of breast oncology. Physician's are most productive when they can freely exchange knowledge and critically interpret each others findings. International relationships and collaboration are therefore viral for fostering mutual enrichment, for maximizing scientific progress, and for promoting joint work on global or universal issues.

(HCG Chairman, Dr.B.S.Ajaikumar with PinkHope Breast Cancer Members)

(Mrs. Roopa Venkatesh receiving the ABCC Award from Mrs. Bhagya Ajaikumar)

(Delegates at the ABCC 'Gala Night')

The important Learning Objectives of the Congress were:

- Current status of mammography, breast ultrasound and MRI breast.
- Breast screening guidelines.
- Gene expression profiling and reviewing some of the test currently available.
- Understand the concept and potential of peripheral gene expression profiling.
- Validation of BCtect, a new gene expression based method for detecting Breast Cancer.

Some activities by HCG in the past - Center for Breast Health

HCG Pink Hope - Breast Cancer Support Group is a forum formed by women who have survived cancer and now lead normal, healthy lives. The support group was formed with the intention to provide a platform where women diagnosed with breast cancer could gather, with their family, to discuss their concerns and answer any question they may have.

The objectives of the HCG Center for Breast Health are to:
  • Disseminate information about Breast Cancer in increasing in incidence in India.
  • Educate Women about early detection of Breast Cancer.
  • Create awareness in women about lifestyle changes that could actually decrease the incidence of Breast Cancer.
  • Identify high risk women and put them on a protocol for early detection.
  • Spread awareness that there is no need to remove the breast in all women with Breast Cancer.
  • Importance of proper diagnosis, proper staging and proper treatment to achieve long term control for cure.

The Pink Hope Breast Cancer Support Group has made a wonderful impact in the lives of many of the cancer patients that have walked through the doors of HCG. In 2009 Pink Hope brought in many innovative concepts into reality to the patients going through cancer treatment.

To illustrate, the Pink Hope Breast Cancer support group meets at the HCG premises every last Saturday of the month. Every month a topic/subject like Yoga Therapy, Life Style Management, Art Therapy and various other topics which create value to patients, survivors and their family members are discussed. The monthly support group meetings provides an outlet for patients to discuss issues and concerns they may have as well as providing information and fun activities.

(Actor Tara Inaugurating The PinkHope Breast Cancer Support Group)

For instances, when yoga was the subject of discussion, followed by some actual demonstrations facilitated by Dr. Raghavendra Rao & his team, the response was very encouraging, with people calling up many weeks after the program, to ask when a repeat program would be conducted. Besides this, many cancer patients enrolled themselves for yoga classes to take advantage that yoga can bring into the healing process. The session on Life Style Management by Dr. Shekhar Patil was also a great success, with questions coming in thick and fast, about what to eat, what to avoid, what helps, what has worked as preventive measures. Another interesting session organized by the group was on the theme “Healing through Art”. This was conducted by a very senior International artist Prof. David Davison, talking about how art is yet another expression of a sensitive soul and the impression it can make in helping in the healing process.

(Breast Cancer Support Group Meeting)

(Dr. Shekar Patil talking on Lifestyle and Diet Management)

(Launch of HCG, Breast Cancer Support Handbook)