Assam: Modi launches South Asia’s largest cancer care network

Published on Apr 28, 2022 04:41 PM IST

He said such specialised care network in Assam is needed as the state and rest of northeast have been reporting large number of cancer cases

Prime Minister Narendra Modi. (PTI)
Prime Minister Narendra Modi. (PTI)

GUWAHATI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday launched South Asia’s largest cancer care network by inaugurating seven hospitals and laying foundations of as many more for the treatment of the disease in Assam.

He inaugurated one hospital in Dibrugarh and virtually launched six cancer hospitals in Barpeta, Tezpur, Jorhat, Darrang, Kokrajhar, and Lakhimpur. He laid the foundation stone of seven new hospitals to be set up at Goalpara, Sivasagar, Dhubri, Nagaon, Golaghat, Tinsukia, and Nalbari.

“There was a time when setting up of one hospital in seven years was considered a big achievement. But today in Assam, seven new hospitals were inaugurated in a day. Three other cancer hospitals are under construction and the foundation stone of seven more have been laid,” Modi said at a public meeting in Dibrugarh.

“Such widespread and specialised cancer care network in Assam is needed as the state and rest of northeast has been witnessing a large number of cancer cases. Earlier patients from poor and middle-class families had to go outside the state for treatment.”

The 17 hospitals are a joint initiative of the Assam government and Tata Trusts. They will be built at a cost of around 4,000 crore. It will be South Asia’s single largest affordable cancer care network.

“Earlier cancer patients from Assam had to go to Delhi, Chennai, and Mumbai for treatment. From now that would not be needed. These hospitals will benefit not only Assam, but they will be the premier cancer care centres in entire South East Asia,” Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said.

The new hospitals will have facilities for chemotherapy, robotic surgery, bone marrow transplant, diagnostic and advanced imaging, nuclear medicine, and stem-cell research.

Tata Trusts’ chairman Ratan N Tata said: “Today is a very important day in the history of the state of Assam. It will take Assam to a higher level in terms of care and treatment of cancer that has not been experienced by other states in the country.”

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    Utpal is a Senior Assistant Editor based in Guwahati. He covers seven states of North-East India and heads the editorial team for the region. He was previously based in Kathmandu, Dehradun and Delhi with Hindustan Times.

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