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New technique for knee replacement
Kulwinder Sangha

Mohali, August 5
People suffering from knee problems always wished to lead an independent, normal life, walking, sqatting, kneeling and getting up from a chair without support. The mantra is hiflex knee replacement, a technique introduced recently worldwide.

With hiflex knee replacement, the patient returns to near-normal activity, says Dr George Kirsh, eminent orthopaedic surgeon from Australia. He says chronic, severe pain in the knee limits a person’s lifestyle and surgery is required. Immobility beyond a certain age is undesirable . Moving and exercising is essential to save oneself from lifestyle diseases.

Dr Kirsh, Chairman, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, St George Private Hospital, Sydney, was here today to give a live demonstration of the latest technique at a two-day international symposium on the hiflex knee at Fortis Hospital . He is also currently the Visiting Medical Officer to several hospitals, including Bankstown/ Lidcombe Hospital and Wolper Jewish Hospital. Till recently, he was also on the medical board of Westpac SLC Helicopter Service. With more than two decades of clinical experience , Dr Kirsh has a sub-speciality interest in Arthroscopy and Trauma injuries.

Dr Kirsh , who was speaking to The Tribune along with Dr Jaswant Rai , Director and joint replacement surgeon, Fortis, said the lifestyle of Asians usually revolved around kneeling and squatting on the floor and the new technique would bring “greater cheer" to patients from this part of the world. The cost of surgery using the new technique was higher as compared to the one using the conventional method, he added.

He said with the new technique the knee movement was not only much quicker but even much more. Recovery took between six to 12 weeks and the patient could walk on the second day after surgery . Dr Kirsh, who has also given a demonstration at the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences, Delhi, said he had performed around 150 surgeries using the technique which was introduced about a year and a half ago. His oldest patient was a woman in Australia, aged 95 years. When she walked into the hospital after sometime with her husband, to a stranger it appeared that the husband was suffering from a medical problem and not his wife, said the renowned surgeon.



PGI patients can look to free surgical disposables
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 5
The PGIMER’s experiment with free first prescription has withstood the test of time. Buoyed by its success in the past four months, when it was initiated, the PGIMER administration has drawn up a blueprint to extend this to surgical disposable as well.

August 15 has been chosen for the launch of the initiative, which is likely to further cut down delays of purchasing drugs and disposals when a patient is wheeled into the Emergency Ward.

Besides, the administration is also working out ways of funding this facility on a long-term basis by recovering partial cost of the expenditure from patients themselves.

While the PGIMER has earmarked a sum of Rs 37 lakh to take care of expenditure on free first prescriptions, it cannot bank on this corpus money forever.

Administrative heads are of the opinion that arrangements to replenish these have to be made and patients are the only obvious source so far.

The funding for free first prescription is coming from the finances drawn from the poor patients fund.

“We have enough finances to sail smoothly through the year. Though this year is not a problem, sustaining the initiative, which has been appreciated and overwhelmingly received by attendants of patients, can be a problem in the future. We are up to the challenge and want to make adequate arrangements,” explains Prof Raj Bahadur, Additional Medical Superintendent and the man credited with the success of the initiative.

For the purpose, the authorities propose to levy charges on patients. They reason that attendants have to make purchases of disposables and medicines on being brought to the PGIMER.

Since this has to be done, it will be more convenient to attend to the patient without making anxious attendants run around with long lists for drugs and disposables.

Instead, the authorities propose attendants to pay the cost of drugs and disposables once initial care has been provided and treatment taken care of. The cost will work out to be much less as compared to making direct purchases.

“We get drugs and surgical disposables at a subsidised cost. This benefit can be passed on to the patient when he pays to us directly rather than buying the drugs from a chemist. Both stand to gain in this way — our problem of funds is solved and our commitment to quality patient care stands,” adds Professor Bahadur.

This matter will be put before the Standing Finance Committee of the Institute and see the light of day only after it gets the approval of the committee.



Cash prizes for shooters welcome step, says Manavjit
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 5
The Punjab shooter Manavjit Sandhu lauded the role of the Indian Government, especially the Punjab Government, for supporting the shooters financially, while applauding their performance by conferring prestigious awards.

“The cash prize awards not only encouraged sportsperson but also draw the attention of other youngsters to take on the game. The handsome amount announced by Punjab Government for its shooters is a step in the direction of popularising the game”, said Manavjit, who brought laurels to the country by clinching the gold medal in trap shooting in World Championship at Zagreb last month.

Speaking to mediapersons at a local hotel here today, the marksman said, “The investment put in by the government some 10 to 15 years before has started paying off as shooting is now on the verge of becoming numero uno sport in the country in terms of medal fetching.”



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