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With the inking of three CSR agreements on 27 January 2020, ONGC has entered into contracts for aiding cancer affected children who are to be treated at Tata Memorial Center (TMC) in Mumbai, so that their diagnosis, treatment and post treatment care can be aided to a certain extent at the least.

The three projects were signed by ED- SM- Regional Office Mumbai Mr R K Sharma and Director of Department of Paediatric Oncology Dr Shripad D Banavali of the TMC, with the engagement of their social organization, ImpaCCT Foundation. The ImpaCCT foundation has been associated with TMC since 2010 and is engaged solely in the area of arranging funds for treatment of children with cancer.

RK Sharma and Dr Shripad D Banavali with the signed CSR agreements to aid cancer affected children
RK Sharma and Dr Shripad D Banavali with the signed CSR agreements to aid cancer affected children

The first of the agreements encompasses diagnosis of cancer in 100 children, amounting to a total of Rs Twenty Lakhs with a limit of Rs 20, 000/- per child, for such children whose families are unable to afford even the diagnostic tests.

The second project arranges for actual treatment of the disease including medicines, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy. Under the proposed project, paediatric palliative care is appropriately considered as a core component of comprehensive care when illness is diagnosed. Palliative care relieves symptoms caused by cancer and improves the quality of life of patients. Not all children with cancer can be cured (nearly eighty per cent can be cured), but relief from suffering is possible for everyone. Here ONGC has undertaken to fund to the tune of an additional twenty lakhs with an estimate of Rs 2,00,000/- (Rupees Two lakhs) per person.

Signing of the MoU
Signing of the MoU

The third area of post-treatment expenses like counselling, hormonal treatment, semen cryopreservation, ocular prosthesis, arterial drugs etc.,  besides psycho social support aims at funding 50 children to the extent of Rs 40,000/- per child.

Thus considering that annually the treatment cost of around 3000 children per annum with around 10-12 new admissions every day it is up to Rs 30,00,00,000 (Rupees Thirty crores), excluding consultation, bed charges etc. and including subsidised medicines, these projects have been taken up a precursor to matter more meaningfully to the beneficiaries in future.

Signing of the MoU

Cancer is the 2nd leading cause of death among children, following only injuries. An average of 70,000 patients visits TMC for their cancer treatment annually. In 2018, 2800 out of these were paediatric patients. 80% of these paediatric patients have been cured.

More than 90% of the children at TMC come from the BPL families and hence require significant economic, accommodation, emotional, travel, and nutritional support to undergo the tedious cancer treatment. Although majority of efforts are made that no child is refused treatment, there are numerous situations where the treatment is delayed or therapy is abandoned by the family due to financial constraints.