Mangaluru: AJ Hospital and Research Centre launches ‘Vayah Vikas’ nodal center

Daijiworld Media Network – Mangaluru (VP)

Mangaluru, Feb 21: AJ Hospital and Research Centre launched ‘Vayah Vikas’ Mangaluru nodal centre here on Wednesday February 21.

Addressing the gathering, retired general manager of Karnataka Bank, G K Bhat, stated, “We must develop skills for a better future life. Many people believe that once someone reaches senior age, they are often neglected in society, but this is no longer true. There is significant care being given to senior citizens nowadays, and our association is actively involved in this endeavour. The government is also implementing commendable initiatives in this regard. The number of senior citizens is increasing, and life expectancy has also risen significantly, with males living up to 83 years and females up to 87 years. Currently, senior citizens constitute around 7-8% of the population, and this percentage is expected to rise in the future.

"In the past, senior citizens were looked after by their families in joint family setups. However, with the shift towards nuclear families and families residing abroad, this dynamic has changed. Our association provides assistance in legal, financial, health, and insurance matters. We encourage discussions with insurance companies to arrange group insurance for senior citizens with customizable add-ons,” he said.

Bhat emphasized the importance of conducting cost-benefit analyses, noting that outflow claims tend to be higher. He assured that the association is fully prepared to assist senior citizens and stressed the need to promote initiatives similar to the quality healthcare available to senior citizens abroad.

Dr Alexander Thomas, founding member of Vayah Vikas, recounted, "In 2012, as CEO of a hospital in Bengaluru, I witnessed the challenges faced by senior citizens and felt compelled to take action. The plight of elders, often subjected to abuse with no recourse, deeply affected me, prompting me to initiate efforts to address this issue."

He further said, "In 2013, we established three national organizations. However, our initial attempts to engage with authorities in Delhi were met with obstacles. Despite our desire to meet the Health Minister, we were only able to speak with a junior official after hours of waiting. Today, our organizations are respected nationwide, and our voices are heard. In countries like the US and Australia, retired persons' associations wield considerable influence. With India's aging population projected to grow significantly in the next 20 years, similar empowerment for senior citizens is crucial."
Dr. Prashanth Marla, Medical Director, expressed, “This is not merely an old-age orphanage where children abandon their parents. Our aim is to create an environment where senior citizens can thrive. Nowadays, it's common worldwide for senior citizens not to live with their children, many of whom reside abroad. Unfortunately, this trend has emerged due to the complexities of modern education, which has become a double-edged sword. Thus, our initiative is designed to cater to the needs of senior citizens.

“Traditionally, people retire by the age of 60-65, assuming that their role is fulfilled, and a younger individual takes their place. However, this perspective is evolving. While today's society may perceive us, the younger generation, as the primary decision-makers, this will not necessarily be the case in the future. We possess a wealth of knowledge and experience that can be invaluable in advising and mentoring the younger generation. Our team is committed to assisting all senior citizens, providing them with a platform to address and resolve their issues,” he said.

Director medical administration Dr Amitha P Marla delivered a talk on taking forward the activities of Vayah Vikas in AJ Hospital and Mangaluru. Earlier, Dr Namratha clinical assistant AJ Hospital spoke on diet, lifestyle and management.

Head of operations Karnataka chapter Vayah Vikas Shankar Ranganathan and advisor Karnataka chapter Srinivas Madhav Rao were also present.





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Title: Mangaluru: AJ Hospital and Research Centre launches ‘Vayah Vikas’ nodal center

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