When a case is referred to CPAA, the journey starts with a counsellor's visit to the hospital or patient's home. Our much experienced, professional counsellors act as virtual catalysts in making treatment effective.
the less apparent needs are also addressed such as guidance on alternative
therapies; help with filling in forms or the distribution of awareness
literature. Our counselors reach out where few other organizations have
ever considered important or necessary to extend a helping hand. Ambulance
services for transportation from ones' home to a treatment centre,
family support groups, playgroups
and creativity classes for children-patients, co-ordinating prostheses
(artificial body parts) and even rehabilitation of a patient rendered
jobless due to long absence from the job or his/her family members to
supplement the family income
... this assistance is rendered with humaneness
a more organized level, CPAA has launched many innovative schemes between
a donor and beneficiary, such as the Adopt-a-Cancer-Patient scheme. Here
the association goes beyond financial support. A fulfilling relationship
is grown built on authentic updates on a patient's progress, health and
well-being and letters of
hope and encouragement exchanged between the two.
also works as an important link in helping patients network with
aid-giving organizations. The society guides patients on how to draft an
appeal and address it to the appropriate forum. It also organizes
medicines at subsidized rates through tie-ups with chemists and
15 counselling centres in Mumbai, attending to more than 1,000 patients
month on month.
have also initiated
a ‘Home Care' programme for palliative patients and developed
a force of 25 independent volunteers to assist CPAA workers.
have also compiled
and published a much needed cancer resource directory entitled Sahayata.
To obtain copies call on 2494-8775 / 2492-4000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Cancer treatment can be a huge drain on family finances, even for the relatively well off. Through whatever limited funds we have, we try to disburse medical aid to as many patients as possible. We also find sponsors, help patients network with aid-giving organizations, guide them about circulating appeals in the proper channels, and organize medicines at wholesale rates through a tie-up with chemists and pharmaceutical companies.
For patients with a good prognosis , we have an Adopt-a-Cancer-Patient scheme, i.e., we try to find sponsors who donate Rs. 75,000 every year for the treatment of their adopted patient. The money covers: post-surgical rehabilitation; transportation; economic support for patients and their families; guidance on spiritual, emotional and psychological problems faced by the entire family; accommodation during treatment and follow up.
On adoption, the sponsor receives the case history, photograph and quarterly progress reports of the patient. CPAA also arranges meetings between the two if so desired. These meetings typically take place at one of the events periodically organised by CPAA. Time and again we have observed that the rapport established between sponsor and adoptee helps the patient combat the disease better.
All donations made to our organization are exempt from Income Tax under Section 80-G of the Income Tax Act (50% tax exemption).
All other patients are placed in the Aid-a-Cancer-Patient category. Based on the prognosis and the amount and kind of medicines needed, a monthly budget is determined, and this is guaranteed to the patient for the full duration of the treatment. This budgeted amount is not paid to the patient in cash, but goes primarily towards funding the prescribed medication. CPAA has made arrangements with chemists to provide medicines at concessional rates. The social worker decides with the patient which medicines can be supplied. The patient can then collect the medicines directly from this chemist on production of the prescription certified by CPAA. We will also, on request, order the medicines, which can be collected from the association offices the next day.
Since funds are limited, CPAA social workers help to raise additional funds through appeal letters, newspaper advertisements and magazine appeals.
Money isn't the only way CPAA helps patients undergoing treatment. Patients coming from far flung locations expect to stay for 1-2 months and invariably end up staying much longer. Thus for patients who can or want to handle their own cooking, we arrange stoves and utensils for the duration of their stay.
Other necessities such as
clothes, toys for children, blankets during the winter and umbrellas for
Mumbai's torrential rains are also given on an individual basis.
Email us, if you would like to make a donation of medicines, especially chemotherapeutic drugs, clothes, toys, blankets, umbrellas, utensils, etc.
No one enjoys being in hospital. Imagine then, if you will, how much worse it must be when you are poor, illiterate, and unable to understand what the doctor is saying in the few moments he spares you. Let's be honest. The sheer numbers our hospitals handle means that patients are often left feeling traumatized.
CPAA steps in to act as a buffer. We run a Counseling cells at: Bombay Hospital, Bharat Sevashram, Vashi, Breach Candy Hospital, Cama and Albless Hospital, Ernest Borges Home, IC Church, Nair Hospital, Nanavati Hospital, Tata Memorial Hospital, Wadia Hospital in Mumbai, and support the patients by filling in forms to reading test reports, to meeting the surgeon to understand the prognosis, recommended treatment and expected side effects and communicate this information to the family. We make sure the patients and their family, fully understand what is going to happen, so that they do not have to abandon treatment halfway due to miscommunication.
A single visit to a patient's house can be very revealing. Often it throws light on problems that a patient will never mention, but which prevent the patients and their family from concentrating on fighting the disease. CPAA's role here is to identify the problems and help solve them, so that the only trauma the patient has to confront is the disease. Over the years, we have arranged jobs for immediate family members, education and even admission into boarding school or foster homes for siblings. The social stigma of cancer sometimes prevents such interactions, with patients telling us not to visit or to park the telltale van with CPAA markings at a distance from their home. In such cases we always respect their feelings.
At time even the best of treatments and whole-hearted efforts of a team of dedicated doctors sometimes fails to cure a cancer patient and the medical fraternity is forced to say that further intervention is not possible. At such a time while some of the patients get admitted to hospices to be taken care of in their final days, some family members refer to take care of the patients at home. These patients in an advanced stage of their disease may be subjected to nausea, vomiting, constipation, diarrhea, bed sores, loss of appetite etc find it difficult to connect with doctors or care-givers.
For such cases, CPAA has set up home care teams headed by our panel doctors who visit such patients at home. The doctor concerned interacts with the family members to assist them in taking care of their dear ones at home until death. The doctor is chosen so that the patients under his or her care live close enough so that they can be contacted in the shortest period of time in case of an emergency. The doctor becomes a part of the family and besides the medical intervention, is able to counsel the caregivers and the patient as the end approaches.
For Doctors involved in Home Care call 2492-4000 / 2492-8775 - Mumbai
Much as we would like to cover all expenses for all those who approach us, funds are limited. Therefore, what we also do is help patients find sponsors, network with aid-giving organizations, and guide them in circulating appeal letters in the proper channels. Over the years, we have established a rapport with about 20 charitable trusts who help our patients with one-time lump sum amounts towards medical relief. These include NM Wadia Charities, Pirojsha Godrej Foundation, Lotus Trust, Time and Talents Club, the Marwadi Sammelan, various churches and convents, Asra, Bagri Foundation, Dorabji Tata Trust, Asian Paints, Sindhi Society and Mahalxmi Trust. The CPAA referral acts as an introduction and establishes the patients' bonafides.
Are you a charitable organization willing to help CPAA help cancer patients? Click here.
The majority of patients coming to Mumbai for surgery or post-surgical treatment (radiotherapy, chemotherapy, etc) need a place to stay while undergoing treatment. Anyone who has had to look for accommodation in this overcrowded city knows what an impossible task it can be. And remember, these people are poor, often illiterate, and ill. CPAA attempts to fill each family's needs as allowed by their budget.
Are you looking for accommodation while you are undergoing treatment in Mumbai? Refer to our Resource Directory for a list of addresses.
CPAA assists patients and their families by providing nutritious food, biscuits, chocolate drinks, and food supplements. The Food Bank supplies rations in the form of food grains.
If you would like to make a donation to the Food Bank, click here. Donations made to our organization are exempt from Income Tax under Section 80-G of the Income Tax Act (50% tax exemption).
Sometimes, patients are asked to get special investigations (MRI, CT Scans, etc) done which may well be beyond their financial capacity. In such cases CPAA has often intervened to get the investigation(s) done free or at greatly reduced rates from various other hospitals and centres.
If you would like to sponsor a special investigation, click here. Donations made to our organization are exempt from Income Tax under Section 80-G of the Income Tax Act (50% tax exemption).
We have 15 vehicles, including
ambulances, which allow us to provide free transportation to the place
of treatment, in cases where the patient is too weak to travel by public
transport and too poor to be able to afford anything better.
August 2002, Dr. Furrokh B. Dhondi gave us the generous donation of an air
conditioned ambulance which will help us to start a shuttle service from
Tata Memorial Hospital to Dadar station. Patients who come for treatment
from the suburbs can now avail of this facility which will ease their
problems to a great extent.
September 2004, The State Bank of India donated a sum of Rs. 7,12,487/- to
us for purchase of a Mini Bus for the use of cancer patients. Seen in the
picture are Shri A. Ramesh Kumar, Chief General Manager, Mumbai LHO
handing over a cheque to our chairman Mr. Y. K. Sapru.
A large majority of patients coming to Tata Memorial Hospital in Mumbai for surgery or post-surgical treatment (radiotherapy, chemotherapy, etc) are from outside Mumbai. The Indian Railways offer such patients and any one attendant a 75% concession on fares. Applications also get preferred treatment when applying for reservations. CPAA then helps patients by covering the balance. We also help patients who are traveling by bus, where no concessions are available. In cases when non-ambulatory patients wanted to travel home but were too weak to undertake an arduous train journey, CPAA has intervened to arrange complimentary or subsidised airline stretcher seat tickets from Indian Airlines.
For patients requiring specialized
treatment abroad, British Airways makes 2 tickets available (for the patient
and one attendant) under their ‘Frequent Flyers Gifted Miles Scheme.'
CPAA identifies such patients, helps set up treatment by communicating
with the respective centres and ensures that arrangements have been made
to cover accommodation and living expenses.
CPAA was able to help this brave young man proceed abroad with a ticket issued by British Airways' under their Donate-a-Mile Scheme. Ms. Sarla Kohli, Director of our Bangalore branch, started the scheme in 1997 and several patients have been helped to travel abroad for specialised treatment not possible in India.
CPAA wishes to express its gratitude to the
generous donation from British Airways.
Leukemia patients and those undergoing surgery need to arrange for blood, and that's not always easy. Very often, in India, even the patient's friends and family are reluctant to donate blood because of misconceptions about it causing harm. The fear of AIDS has exacerbated the situation. CPAA maintains a databank of willing donors, along with their blood groups. In an emergency, our employees have themselves donated blood. We also try to mobilize donations among the patients' community, reassuring them that blood donation is perfectly safe.
Leukemia patients also sometimes need transfusion of platelets, the blood cells that help in clotting. This involves passing the donors blood through a cell separator, which extracts the platelets in a process called plateletpheresis, delivers them to the patient, and returns the rest of the blood to the donors' body. Since only a part of the blood is actually transferred, platelet donation can be done more often than the once in six months allowed for blood donation.
If you are willing to be put on CPAA's donor list, email email@example.com
Cancer surgery often requires the removal of the affected body part, which must later be replaced, so that the patient can lead a normal life. These replacement parts can be prohibitively expensive for the patients who have already used up most of their savings for treatment. CPAA helps cancer patients obtain the following kinds of prostheses:
If you would like to make a donation towards providing prostheses for a cancer patient, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
When CPAA first started its activities in 1969, most hospitals did not recognize the importance of volunteer counseling work that we offered. Over the past 30 years, the trend has now changed and most major hospitals now recognise the need to address the psychosocial issues of their cancer patients. In this direction, organisations such as our own have been asked to counsel patients undergoing treatment. Doctors now feel that there is a positive benefit in actively involving patients in their treatment by providing relevant information through volunteers. While every effort is made at hospitals to educate the patients on the disease, treatment, side effects, prognosis, morbidity and mortality, the patient is often not in a state of mind to absorb the information. Later when doubts surface, the patient is inhibited because he feels the doctor is too busy, the questions are too trivial or he is too embarrassed. And very important pieces of information do not get conveyed.
Our volunteers meet the patient at different stages of their treatment-diagnosis, treatment and follow up. They explain exactly what the treatment entails, its risks and benefits, cost, pain, change in appearance, hair loss, effect on social participation and professional activity, side effects, diet restrictions, care of affected parts, sexual problems. During the conversation, the patient is encouraged to open out and personal problems too are discussed. We are always careful to check with treating doctors on the information being given, so that the material is presented in an unambiguous fashion, clearing doubts along the way and in a manner that allows the patient to make a meaningful decision. A counselor must share concerns, help the patient to seek support and help and above all avoid misconceptions and erroneous advice.
The counselor's role is to give information taking into consideration the wishes of the patient and their caregiver, keeping in view their compulsions. The counselor acts as a bridge between doctor and patient and contributes by taking part throughout the course of the treatment. The ultimate decision about treatment is the patient's to make. A professional advisor with whom a close relationship is formed can be of help in a situation where otherwise the patient feels powerless to say yes or no or even ask questions.
CPAA runs a 3 day 'Psycho-Oncology Volunteers Training Programme' every month to educate individuals working in the field, imparting basic information regarding cancer, highlighting psychological, social and spiritual problems faced and how to help patients and family members cope. Read more
To join the volunteer program email email@example.com
Through the Menaxiben Shah
and Rekhaben Shah Memorial trust, Richfeel is bringing in some positives
to the lives of cancer patients. The trust believes in helping cancer
patients face the world with the same spirit and joyful demeanor of a
healthy individual. The program offers free treatment to all cancer
patients in order to ensure that the damages of chemotherapy and radiology
do not damage their spirit to fight. This is a clinic is conducted on the
1st Monday of every month between 3-7pm at: