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Updated: May 9, 2013 23:39 IST

Charity comes calling twice

J. S. Ifthekhar
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Qadeer Khan (centre) with Dr. Ali Mehdi (left) and Mujtaba Hasan Askari.
Qadeer Khan (centre) with Dr. Ali Mehdi (left) and Mujtaba Hasan Askari.

Thanks to helping hands, 31-year-old Qadeer Khan undergoes two complex surgeries for hip joints at no cost at all. While the HHF picked up the cost of the ceramic implant, the surgeon waived off his fee

It’s a new lease of life for Qadeer Khan. The 31-year-old man was twice unfortunate in having to go in for total hip joint replacement. But both times he was lucky enough to get someone to bail him out.

A glass cutter by profession, Khan attracted the dreaded ‘Avascular Necrosis’ of femur. It is a condition where there is cellular death of bone components due to interruption in blood supply. The shooting pain in the hip joint made him immobile. Left with no alternative, Khan underwent total replacement of his left hip in April 2012.

The Helping Hand Foundation (HHF), a charitable trust, picked up the hospital bill of Rs. 3 lakh.

Formed by a team of IT professionals, the HHF extends financial aid for medical emergencies. After recovery, Khan went back to work much against the doctor’s advice. A few months back he again developed pain – this time in the right hip joint. Udai Clinic, where he was first operated upon, suggested a second total hip joint replacement.

No Aarogyasri

Being the sole bread-winner for his family, Khan, a resident of Chowni Nade Ali Baig in Chanchalguda, had difficulty in supporting his wife, a two-year-old child and old parents. He certainly couldn’t afford Rs. 3 lakh for the surgery.

To his misfortune, the Avascular Necrosis disease doesn’t figure in the list of ailments covered by the Aarogyasri scheme. Luckily, the HHF came to his rescue for the second time.

Without losing time Mujtaba Hasan Askari of HHF got in touch with Dr. S. Ali Mehdi, a leading hip joint replacement surgeon in Europe. A consultant orthopaedic surgeon at the Borders General Hospital, Melrose near Edinburgh, Dr. Mehdi flew down from Scotland on Monday and operated upon Khan at the Olive Hospital.

“What’s more within two hours of the surgery, he made the patient walk,” said Mr. Askari.

The operation saw introduction of some of the best international practices. There was reduced recovery time, no ICCU management post surgery. The HHF picked up the cost of the ceramic implant put as a replacement for the hip joint while the surgeon waived off his fee.

The Olive Hospital also agreed to reduce the charges for the complex surgery to almost one-third of the actual cost. The triangular arrangement between HHF, doctor and the hospital resulted in zero cost to the patient.

It’s easy to make a buck. But it’s lot tougher to make a difference. That’s what the Good Samaritans have done.

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