The Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare, J.P. Nadda and Minister for Railways, Suresh Prabhu, today inaugurated two additional coaches of the Lifeline Express (LLE) to introduce cancer and family health services to the ‘Lifeline Express’. The additional coaches to the already existing five-coach hospital train ‘Lifeline Express’ will be used for detection & control of oral, breast and cervical cancer, and prevention of stroke and for family health services.
Speaking on the occasion, J P Nadda stated that this initiative will help in reaching out to the unreached areas of the country, usually rural areas with insufficient medical facilities, or areas hit by natural disasters, etc. The train will stay in each place for several days while medical care (routine as well as major surgery) is provided to the local people. “I thank Indian railways for this approach as we gave to provide health services wherever possible, especially in the inaccessible places where the train can go,” Nadda elaborated.
These additional services will be provided to augment the existing restorative surgeries conducted for sight, hearing, clefts, burn contractures and orthopaedic impairment, and treatment of epilepsy and dental problems on the Lifeline Express. Three fully equipped operation theatres will be available for free-of-cost services to the rural poor across the country. A total of 10,000 persons will benefit at each project location. The augmented seven-coach Lifeline Express will commence its 178th Lifeline Express project at Satna, in Madhya Pradesh (MP) from December 15, 2016 till January 5, 2017. Other LLE projects in 2017 will be at Telangana, Punjab, Chhattisgarh, MP, Gujarat and other locations.
This is a unique project which has so far medically treated over one million disabled poor in rural India, all free of cost, made possible with the ‘donated’ services of over 200,000 medical professionals from around the world. At 177 projects across India, the Lifeline Express has performed more than one lakh surgeries for restoration of mobility, vision, hearing and correction of facial deformities. The Lifeline Express has also provided treatment for epilepsy and dental ailments.
The Lifeline Express known worldwide as the “Magic Train of India” has been the model for several countries to replicate this unique project with Hospital Trains and River Boat Hospitals.
Also present during the function were senior officers of the Ministry of Health and Railways.