Maharashtra’s first cochlear transplant centre at the Indira Gandhi Government Medical College (IGGMC) was set up last year in September. The central government backed centre which finances single-ear implants will now be providing implants for the second year as well with the help of the state government.
The scheme called ADIP (Assistance to disables persons for purchase/fitting of appliances) is backed by the central government, under the ministry of social justice and empowerment. This state government’s new scheme of providing second-ear implants will be called ‘Shravnit Maharashtra’.
The one-ear implants enable hearing and speech ability amongst children but it is as good as half hearing. The initiative will ensure the kids are not left feeling incomplete with just one-ear implants.
While speaking to TOI, Dr. Viral Kamdar, Director of Pt. Deendayal Upadhyay Institute of Medical Research, Science and Human Resource and adviser to Union minister Nitin Gadkari, said an original proposal has been drafted which is inspired by the Kerala pattern wherein apart from the ADIP scheme, funds are being provided by the state government for the initiative.
“As per the minutes of the meeting, chief minister Devendra Fadnavis has agreed to replicate the Kerala model in toto. This has opened a new door for hearing-impaired and mute children to get cochlear implants in both ears as well as complete rehabilitation post-surgery,” said Dr Kamdar.
However, implanting the hearing devices is not enough and that proper rehabilitation should be provided in the form of speech therapy, audiologist training, maintaining equipment throughout its life (which is just 5-6 years) without any physical damage, all post-operative care etc.
The Shravnit Maharashtra scheme will undertake the implantation process as well as the aftercare.
Dr. Jeevan Vedi, professor and head of IGGMC, trained by Dr. Milind Kirtane, the father of cochlear implants in the country at Hinduja Hospital, has by far conducted around five implantation surgeries and another five in the pipeline. If the state gives a nod to the state cochlear implant programme to support the ADIP, it will be a major boost to congenital hearing-impaired and mute children.
Ali Yavarganj Hospital in Mumbai is the coordinating agency for the project, who are providing cochlear transplants to children. An expense of Rs. 5 to 14 lakh is borne by the hospital for implant process. IGGMC conducts a free trial before fixing the devices. The hospital also provides speech therapist and audiologist services to train the child after implant to hear and interpret, free of cost.
Information source: timesofindia
Title image source: housewifeclass