By Sandeep Puranik
Bilaspur, Sep 7 (IANS) Old age may be synonymous with frailty, diseases, loneliness and dependability as a majority of the senior citizens often find it difficult to cope with even the daily chores or the basic necessities of living. Most are dependent on their children for almost everything, but there are increasing cases of abandonment and neglect. In Chhattisgarh’s Bilaspur, an initiative has been launched to help the senior citizens in the city with the establishment of a palliative care centre.
With the help of the Social Welfare Department of the Chhattisgarh government, Sankalpit Seva Sanathan has started the care centre.
The director of the centre, Sandeep Tiwari said: “Our centre provides help to those old patients who are suffering from non curable diseases, are terminally ill and need nursing care. We have seen families which have not been able to provide the proper care, so we are here to help such old patients.”
“We try to provide help to the old terminally ill patients. We make sure that in their last days they get full care and their suffering is lessened,” said Tiwari.
Sandeep Tiwari claims that the centre is the first of its kind in Central India and will help the people in the whole region. He said: ” Palliative care is for those patients who suffer from non curable diseases. Our aim is to help them in all possible means so as to ease their pain.”
Bilaspur District Collector Sanjay Alang has also contributed to this initiative. Alang is known in the district for taking up the cause of people in distress. Recently, he took the initiative of getting the six-year-old daughter of a Central prison inmate admitted to a school. And, now his step to open the palliative care centre for the old and infirm is also being appreciated by the people.
Alang said: “We want to convey this message to the community that old people are not just the responsibility of their children, society also has to share the responsibility. Through this palliative care centre we want to help the old patients so that their last days are spent peacefully.”
The palliative centre has doctors, nursing staff, physiotherapist, yoga instructors and social activists. The centre also gets regular visits from religious preachers. Presently the centre has 10 patients.
Patients are admitted with the permission of their family members and the service is free of cost. But, the centre has decided one thing and that is after the death of a patient they wait only for 24 hours for the family to take the body otherwise they perform the last rites themselves.