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19 Jan 2021, Edition - 2016, Tuesday

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Coimbatore

Walter P. Blount Humanitarian International Award for surgeon

Covai Post Network

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Director of Ganga Hospital, Dr. S. Rajasekaran will receive the prestigious Walter P Blount Humanitarian International Award from the Scoliosis Research Society. The Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) is an international spine society found in 1966 in USA and is now recognized as one of the World’s premier spine societies. This is the first time in history that a surgeon of Asian and Indian origin has been selected for this prestigious American award.

Dr. S. Rajasekaran will receive the award during their Golden Jubilee Annual Meeting to be held in Minnesota, next week. The awardee is chosen by a special committee comprising some of the most senior spine surgeons of the society.

The Blount Award is an international humanitarian award given to an individual who has provided outstanding service for those with spinal deformities, through their generous actions out of a sense of service to larger social and professional goals. Nominations are sought from the Fellows each year. A grand plaque will be awarded and the recipient will be honoured with an introduction by the President. The awardee is allowed to present his work and the impact it has created to the society.

Dr. Rajasekaran is specifically being honoured for creating a low cost high quality spine surgery model which has benefited more than 7000 poor patients. Highly complex spine surgeries which cost more than USD 100,000 (Rs.65 lakhs) are being done in Ganga Hosptial for USD 1500 (less than Rs.1 lakh) through various welfare projects such as Project Helpline and Project Straight Spine.

This model was created by a combination of the entire medical team operating free, development of low cost indigenous implants (that cost one hundredth of the cost of imported implants), a heavy subsidy from hospital and development of new techniques like low density implant fixation. This model has been appreciated by the International body as the most suited not only for developing nations but also for many advanced countries as adoption of these principles will bring the cost down tremendously.

Dinesh Sharma,39,businessman and a patient of Ganga Hospital felt that it is an award well deserved. “I suffered a major problem with my knee due to heredity. I visited two ortho hospitals in the city. Both of them recommended surgery. But, when I visited Dr Rajasekaran he ruled out surgery and suggested apt treatment course. I am happy and healthy now,” Dinesh says.

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