People across Rajasthan suffering from eye conditions are set to benefit from free and subsidised medical care thanks to a new initiative backed by one of the region’s leading charities.
The Maharana of Mewar Charitable Foundation (MMCF), based at the City Palace in Udaipur, has made a series of grants to Alakh Nayan Mandir Eye Institute, facilitating the establishment of a brand new 2,500 sq ft ward.
MMCF Chairman and Managing Trustee Shriji Arvind Singh Mewar said over the past two years it has donated Rs 50 lakhs (equivalent to almost £60,000) to pay for the construction of a Free Patients Ward at the institute’s base in Udaipur, and support day-to-day running costs. He said the new 48-bed ward has its own examination room, nursing station, toilets and a storage area. As well as helping to cover initial building and furnishing costs, the financial support has been used to purchase fire safety and medical equipment.
“We are immensely proud to see the new ward opening with MMCF support,” he said. “Helping local charities and families in Udaipur and Rajasthan is fundamental to the ethos of my family handed down through generations. It is our duty to provide for the people not just economically through the City Palace and tourism-related activities but also in vital health and community projects. Health programmes require constant backing and we encourage philanthropists and NRIs to visit Udaipur and learn more about how they can work with MMCF and the broad range of community programmes we work with across health, education, the environment and therefore sustain the local economy.”
The Free Patients Ward at Alakh Nayan Mandir opened its doors just over a year ago, before becoming fully functional last October. By following international standards, the eye institute has managed to boost efficiency, improve patient safety and satisfaction, and optimise the use of resources in order to lower costs.
In the 12 months to March, a total of 3,661 poor and needy patients from the most deprived parts of Rajasthan were cared for at the institute, before and after undergoing eye operations. The centre hopes to care for an additional 800 patients this year.
Alakh Nayan Mandir Eye Institute is run as a charitable trust and has become a well-known name in the field of eye care following its establishment in 1997. The organisation aims to provide the highest level of medical care to all sections of society, and offers free and subsidised treatment to patients unable to pay. The institute supports The National Programme for Control of Blindness and Visual Impairment, while its own outreach programme sees eye care specialists deliver ophthalmic services to people living in remote villages across Rajasthan. The organisation’s long-term aim is to make the region free of curable eye problems.
To date, the Alakh Nayan Mandir Eye Institute has completed over 82,400 operations, of which nearly two-thirds were carried out for free. Hundreds of thousands of other treatments have also been provided to patients free of charge, and more than 2,800 eye check-up camps have been held in and around the city of Udaipur to help prevent blindness and help restore patients’ sight.
Established in October 1969, MMCF supports a vast range of charitable causes, ranging from medical charities like the Alakh Nayan Mandir Eye Institute to sporting initiatives, education, the arts, promotion of women in society and historical research programmes.
Shriji Arvind Singh Mewar, the 76th Custodian of the House of Mewar and current Chairman and Managing Trustee of MMCF, recently paid a visit to the medical centre in order to tour the Free Patients Ward, meet medical staff and speak to patients.
Heritage conservation is the major focus of MMCF’s work as it preserves the ‘living heritage’ of Mewar and Rajasthan. Udaipur’s 200,000 sq ft City Palace Museum, which dates back to 1559, is regarded as one of the world’s most significant heritage sites. It houses a vast collection of exhibits from paintings and rare photographs to silver, armoury, textiles, besides collections of crystal and vintage cars at other locations. In March 2017, conservation experts from across India, the UK and US gathered at the museum for an interactive workshop, aimed at showcasing new and innovative techniques for conserving historical buildings.
If you would like to know more about visiting Udaipur and supporting the foundation visit: www.eternalmewar.in Contact Vrinda Raje Singh MMCF CEO email: firstname.lastname@example.org