In a major boost to cancer care in Assam and the Northeast, the foundation stone of the unique 19 hospital cancer cure grid project was laid by TATA Trusts Chairman Ratan Tata and BJP National president Amit Shah at the Veterinary Grounds, Khanapara in Guwahati today.
Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, NEDA Convener and State Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma and Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu were also present on the occasion.
The base laying ceremony paves way for affordable cancer treatment for all sections of people, especially for the poor and the marginalized. The mega project comprises of 18 hospitals plus an apex research and development multi speciality unit.
A corpus of Rs 1,910 crore has been created by the Assam government and the Tata Trust under the newly-floated Assam Cancer Care Foundation to execute the project. As part of the initial funding, TATA trust will invest Rs 830 crore and the remaining Rs 1080 crore is to be put in by the Assam Government. An additional Rs 200 crore will also be spent on these 19 hospitals out of which Rs 180 crore will be borne by the Centre.
Divided into three categories L1, L2 and L3, the non profitable entity in Darrang, Goalpara, Golaghat, Haflong and Sivasagar having diagnosis and day-care centres without surgery facilities will fall into category L3.
Existing and proposed medical colleges at Barpeta, Jorhat, Silchar, Tezpur and others having facilities for radiation, chemotherapy and surgery with 150 bedded hospitals to fall into category L2. While in the category of L1, Assam Medical College and Hospital will be the referral centre with 200-250 beds.