19th Feb, 2021: In India, Non-communicable diseases accounts for more than 60% of deaths. Out of these, 26% are attributed to cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) and 9% are attributed to Cancer. CVDs and cancer cause approx. 32% of total deaths in the North-East region. This is about the same as the total deaths attributed to communicable, neonatal, maternal, and nutritional diseases, according to the latest study published by Lancet in 2018. In Assam, this number goes up to 44% for the age group 40-69 years with Ischaemic Heart Disease and Stroke as the most common causes of mortality. The study also elaborates on the leading causes behind such high incidence of Cardio and Onco related health issues. The leading overlapping risk factors included dietary risks, high systolic blood pressure, air pollution, high total cholesterol, tobacco consumption, high fasting plasma glucose, and high body-mass index. The pandemic has taught everyone how nothing in the world matters more than ‘Health’.
To discuss on these rising and disturbing health disorders in the North-East region, SeekMed, a global tele-health platform that allows patients worldwide to seek professional and ethical medical advice from India's eminent award-winning doctors, organized a virtual roundtable today in Guwahati with country’s top Cardio and Onco experts- Padma Bhushan Awardee, Dr T.S. Kler, Chairman - Fortis Heart and Vascular Institute and Medical Advisor for SeekMed and Dr Harit Chaturvedi, Chairman - Max Institute of Cancer Care, Max Super Specialty Hospital and a Patron of SeekMed. The roundtable also discussed how COVID changed the healthcare world from being traditional to digital mode of consultations, which pushes the need for more reliable and authentic tele-health players like SeekMed.
On the rising oncology health issues in Guwahati, Dr Harit Chaturvedi, Chairman - Max Institute of Cancer Care, Max Super Specialty Hospital and a Patron of SeekMed, said, “Cancer is a big problem in the North-East region. The incidence is almost double of the national average (ICMR & PBCR data) and is high in both Men & Women. The reason we see the high incidence of oral cancer, oesophageal & gastric cancer is because of the habit of rampant use of tobacco both in smoking from & smokeless from. Also, the consumption of non-vegetarian diet & use of roasted meat, increases the probability of gastric cancer. Further, Covid adversely affected cancer patients' care. There were three prong effects on cancer patients. First people did not travel to the doctor leading to delay in diagnosis, which, in turn leads to stage migration, thus ultimately leading to more complex treatments & yet poor outcomes. Secondly, a lot of treatments were interrupted thus affecting the quality of life. Thirdly, many patients could not come for follow up, hence, difficulty in picking up issues related to treatment on time. However, due to the convenience & the utility of digital platforms for consultation, we have seen significant increase in patients from far off places with huge online rush from the North-East region.”
Elaborating on the need for authentic and reliable tele-health players in the post covid era, Mr Alok Awasthi, Founder, SeekMed, shared the idea behind launching a platform like SeekMed, “Patient care and welfare is of paramount importance to SeekMed. We’re committed to improving the quality of life of our patient community. By on-boarding best in class senior clinicians who are renowned in their fields and accomplished in their careers, we ensure that a patient only gets the best clinical consultation without any consideration of commercial gains. Our doctors are extremely credible, trustworthy and have a reputation which precedes their work. Our health library is the world’s most comprehensive and credible collection of wellness titles and patient education content helping our patient community in their own health journeys from initial discovery to complete recovery”
Furthermore, elaborating on the digital consultations and the rising cases of cardiovascular diseases in Guwahati and the region, Padma Bhushan Awardee, Dr T.S. Kler, Chairman - Fortis Heart and Vascular Institute and Medical Advisor for SeekMed, said “Cardiac problems have not spared this region of the nation. The high incidences of cardiac problems and over 40-50% of the population living with high bad cholesterol levels is a concern. Timely diagnosis and medical intervention are integral to ensure that cardiac care is not delayed. However, the current scenario is different from what it was exactly a year ago. Today we avoid visiting a medical facility unless urgent. Under such conditions it is essential to be connected with the specialists who can be consulted remotely through providers such as SeekMed. Unfortunately, cardiac problems are becoming common among young urban residents of Guwahati, owing to the increasing sedentary lifestyle, more on-screen jobs and less mobility. Little lifestyle modification and self awareness can save people from life-threatening health problems. Over the past 10 months the mode of medical consultation has shifted to telemedicine, which helps people control their health without exposing themselves to the virus. ”
Talking about the role and importance of seeking second opinions, Mr. Sharad Dubey, Co-founder, SeekMed, elaborates, “It is imperative to understand that getting expert second opinions is becoming a necessity to improve patient outcomes. It is no longer a luxury in the healthcare journey of a patient nor reserved for a fortunate few. Healthcare experts strongly recommend that patients should seek a second opinion to proceed with their treatment paths with more confidence and avoid unnecessary medical procedures. Getting timely second opinions from super specialists can not only save lives but also help patients take better control of their medical decisions. Telemedicine can be a great enabler in such decision-making by empowering patients and adding significant value in their healthcare journeys.”
SeekMed is a global tele-health platform focused on tele-medicine and patient education. Our philosophy is to empower the patient community so that they can take better control of their medical conditions. The platform connects patients worldwide with India's award-winning and most admired super specialists for second opinion and professional and ethical medical advice. The super specialist doctors associated with SeekMed are the recipients of Padma Bhushan, Padma Shri, Dr. BC Roy, Dr. SS Bhatnagar and many other prominent awards and come from India's most prominent medical institutions and hospitals. With 30+ years of average experience, more than 60% of our doctors are at the Chairman/HOD/Director level at India's most reputed hospitals and hold notable positions at national and international professional bodies.
*This story is published by VOH team*
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