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Indian Doctors who helped poor people and set a great example| The Youth Special

Doctors live in a Tribal village, save kids’ lives by charging just ₹1

Those who aspire to become a doctor, the first thing that they say is, “When I become a doctor, I would give free treatment to the patients or I would charge a minimal fee from poverty-stricken people.” But the reality is that most of them wouldn’t keep up the word. It’s a fact!

However, there are few doctors who have been charging very less from poor patients for so many years. Case in point, husband and wife doctors are charging just Re 1 for treatment even today.

Hailing from Nagpur, Maharashtra, Dr Ravindra Kolhe did his MBBS from GMCH Nagpur, in 1985 and was assigned to go to Bairagarh for 1.5 years.

There he saw the unfortunate situation of poor people in the tribal outskirts. Then he went to Nagpur to do his MD in preventive and social medicine, after which he made a decision to settle in Bairagarh in the year 1987.

Later on, his wife Dr Smita Kolhe who specialises in Ayurveda and Homeopathy joined him in helping the people.

Both of them charge patients just Re 1 for getting treated at their clinic. Besides, they together ran their own government ration shop.

In a statement to the Times of India, Mr Kolhe said, “Initially, we would walk about 40 km from the bus station. But after 15 years, the bus started coming to our hospital. It is the people of Melghat who have brought this honour to me. Had they not accepted me, I would have been nowhere.”

The best part is that they provide medical care without any expensive medical equipment “While working in tribal regions, doctors must know how to deliver a baby without the facility of sonography or blood transfusion, how to diagnose pneumonia without an X-ray and how to cure diarrhoea. With these skills, I earned the respect of tribal people,” he added.

They have also saved several kids’ lives by charging the same amount. “When I came here 1985 after completing my MBBS, I was shocked to see the condition of tribals living in this area. IMR was around 200 per thousand children which was one of the highest in the country. But over a period of time, things have improved and now IMR is around 40 which I believe would go down as government, as well as the local groups, are working hard in this direction,”

For their fruitful contributions to the society and the tribals of Melghat, both Mr and Mrs Kolhe were awarded the prestigious Padma Shri by President of India Ram Nath Govind in 2019.

This ’10 Rupees Doctor’ from Karnataka has been treating ‘poor patients’ for 22 Years

Kallesh is a doctor in Mallasamudra village in Karnataka and charges Rs 10 for poor patients and sometimes he doesn’t charge anyone at all. Not for once or twice, he has been doing this for the past 22 years. Now he is on an important mission to assist the people those who come from economically backward sections of the society to get low-cost medical facilities.

He took on the marvellous initiative to treat the poor patients for a less charge as he himself comes from a poor background and had seen people of his locality suffer from diseases as they were unable to afford high-cost medical facilities and treatment. In a bid to tackle the financial crisis, he used to sell milk and take up part-time jobs while he was pursuing his degree, reported The New Indian Express

“I faced a tough time during my school and college days. We have a small farm. I bought cattle and sold milk to pursue my education,” Kallesh told TNIE. “I saw many poor people suffering from diseases and they had no money for treatment,” he said, adding how before joining BAMS, he plied his trade as an assistant with Dr. P C Chappanmath who was from Mallasamudra, which is a small drought-prone village where people suffered from severe poverty.

“After finishing my BAMS, I still had pictures of those impoverished people in my mind. So I decided to serve the poor and selected Mallasamudra village,” he said.

Dr. Kallesh comes to the village on his cycle on a regular basis and creates awareness among other people too, to use cycle ‘as a mode of transport’ in order to lead a healthy life.

“Our doctor is a really good human being. He visits the houses of the elderly and the specially-abled and doesn’t charge anything,” Shanraappa Yali, a Mallasamudra resident, told TNIE and also said that Kallesh often also distributes medicines for free. “We often try to force him to accept the payment for medicines at least, but he has always declined. He is a role model for all of us,” Shanraappa added.

Meet Dr Ganesh Rakh – He doesn’t charge a single penny if a ‘Baby Girl’ is born in the hospital

No one can deny the fact that good people always win the hearts and minds of the people. Dr Ganesh Rakh falls in the same bracket. He is a potential doctor by trait and to come to his stature, he sweated it out day in day out. The down-to-earth person with social intelligence loves to make society a better place, come what may.

When the detailed reports of the 2011 census came to light, Ganesh Rakh understood the seriousness of the situation. According to the United Nations report, Indian girl child aged 1-5 years was 75% more likely to die than an Indian boy child. Digging a bit deep, the doctor came to know that there were just 914 girls for every 1000 boys under the age of 7.

Known as Obstetrician and Gynecologist, Dr Ganesh Rakh realised that people were only pumped up to see the birth of a boy but when a girl is born, they think of the poor little soul as a burden to them. Knowing this, our Prime Minister Narendra Modi has initiated a campaign ‘Beti Bachao Beti Padhao Yojana’, (Save the Girl Child Campaign) – an initiative to save and empower the girl child.

Following the initiative, a lot of celebrities featuring Bollywood actors and Sports Personalities have teamed up to promote this good cause through campaigns against female foeticide, which is deemed to be the biggest issue in India.

Rakh runs Medicare Hospital Foundation Trust hospital in Pune’s Hadapsar area in 2007. He is believed to be a well-known person in the city. Dr Ganesh Rakh also initiated his own principle in 2012 in his hospital. Till date, it has received positive feedback as to when a girl child is born in the hospital, he does not charge and that’s his principle.

Yes, you heard it right! He does not charge a single penny on the girl child’s birth and also bears all the expenses on his own. So far in the last 4 years, 464 girls have been born in this hospital. The hospital staff comes with cakes and flowers whenever a precious little angel is born, which is the best thing you’ll ever see.

Ganesh Rakh said that this is just a beginning and said that more than 5000 doctors in India are following his footprints. Rakh reportedly said, “People ask for the discount when a baby girl is born and when in case of a boy the family pays bills and charges happily”.

The experienced professionals also went on to add saying that he will start charging when people value girl’s birth as much as the boy’s birth. “I want to change attitudes – of people, doctors. The day people start celebrating a daughter’s birth, I’ll start charging my fee again. Otherwise, how will I run my hospital?”

Doctor provides free treatment to homeless people & beggars

A doctor is the second God. He is someone who restores human’s health back to normal through the best practice of medicine. With vast knowledge, a doctor can diagnose and treat human disease, injuries, ailments, pain and so on. Have you seen a doctor giving free treatment to the homeless people and beggars?

Meet Dr. Abhijit Sonawane. Hailing from Pune, he is now like a family member to the poor and needy people. Dr Abhijeet Sonawane treats those poverty-stricken people and beggars absolutely free of cost. This goes to show he is a man of generosity. He starts his day by visiting religious places and helps the physically challenged and homeless people by providing the best treatment.

This doctor is no less than a god for poor and needy people. He not only takes care of those elderly homeless or physically challenged people by giving them free medicines but also carries those less unfortunate ones in emergency conditions to government hospitals. He bears all their expenses.

Dr. Abhijit Sonawane stressed the fact that elderly homeless people are the ones who have been abandoned by their families. In order to survive, they have no other option but to beg.

“These elderly people are generally the ones who have been abandoned by their families and have no option but to beg. I not only do their check-up but also give them free medicines, which I carry with me. I do this from 10 am to 3 pm from Monday to Saturday,” the generous doctor told in an interview to ANI.

Not for days or weeks or months but for 2 years, the doctor has been looking after them and helping them at the right time. He also has a trust called ‘Soham Trust’ which comes forward to initiates the task. This is how the doctor gives back to society and he is one of a kind. The doctor emphasised that he loves to build a good relationship with the people he gives treatment.

He is also convincing the poor people to quit begging and do some other work. “This is my way of giving back to society. While treating these people I build a rapport with them and then try to convince them to quit begging and do some kind of work. I also assure them of my support in all forms,” said Sonawane.

Written by Sagar Abhinandan

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