Published on: December 20, 2012

Raghavi and her sister - the first patient on 08 December 2011Family Rendezvous & First Anniversary Celebration of Pediatric Palliative Care Clinic on December 8, 2012:

“I feel God’s presence here”, said Ms Vimala, Menon, social activist and secretary of Cheshire Home, Trivandrum. She was the chief guest at the first anniversary of the Pediatric Palliative Care Clinic at the S.A.T Hospital in Government Medical College. More than 60 children and their families celebrated the day along with Pallium India and with the Department of Pediatric Neurology and Department of Pediatrics on December 8, 2012.

I remember my first day at the clinic and our first patient Raghavi.

Raghavi, a huddled form constantly crying out in pain was brought in by her sister, a girl not more than 13 yrs of age. Raghavi’s endless cries and her sister’s attempts to pacify her are still fresh in my mind and it was heart breaking. I felt Pediatric Palliative care was not my cup of tea and was determined not to set my foot there ever again. But my team mates convinced me otherwise. Looking back now I am glad that I decided to listen to my team mates. I was rewarded with the sight of a more peaceful Raghavi at next visit. Within this one year, our multidisciplinary team has been successful in providing palliative care to 121 children.

What fun the children and we had at the first anniversary! Inspired by Dr. Ajayan’s encouraging words, many parents came forward and shared their experience with life – suffering, hope, rejection, support. Many of our young patients and their siblings entertained – they sang, they danced. Dr. Sithara, our palliative care physician, presented the report on our activities and Dr. P. G Hariprasad, Associate Professor, welcomed the gathering. The clinic was officially named “Prateeksha” meaning hope. The invited guests were presented with beautiful paper-flower bouquets made by Manoj, wheelchair bound young man under palliative care at Pallium India. Gifts of toys, coloring books and crayons brought smiles to the young faces. And I think they enjoyed the lunch that was provided

All this became possible because of the generous contributions made by kindhearted individuals and organizations. On behalf of our patients, their families and SAT Hospital, Pallium India expresses its heartfelt gratitude especially to Shri. Raman Namboodiri, Ebenezer Marthoma Palliative Care Unit, Dhanalakshmi Bank (Vazhuthacaud) and State Bank of Tranvancore (Medical College Branch).

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