Sahrudaya is a health, medical and educational trust founded by Dr. Alla Gopala Krishna Gokhale with a view to rendering service to poor people crippled with heart, lung and vascular diseases.
During his two-decade old practice both in the Government and private sector, Dr. Gokhale has seen thousands of patients silently suffering from cardiac disease because of their inability to afford the costly medical and surgical treatment. What makes the situation more tragic is that India has medical professionals who are second to none in their knowledge, skills and expertise and has world–class hospitals with state–of–the–art equipment. Yet, the poor, who have no access to high–tech health care, reconcile themselves to fate or destiny or karma.
Heart disease has emerged as the number one killer among Indians, according to a study by the Registrar General of India (RGI) and the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR). It is the leading cause of death among males as well as females, rich as well as poor and in all regions of India.
Indians are genetically three times more susceptible than Europeans and Americans to
heart attack. What is more disturbing is that the mean age for coronary heart disease in India is 55 for men and 56 for women. Thirty percent of the victims are aged 40 and below.
Again, every year approximately 1,80,0000 children are born with congenital heart diseases, nearly half of them requiring early intervention.
Imagine the plight of a family whose sole breadwinner succumbs to coronary heart disease in the prime of his/her life or a family which is burdened by a child with a crippling congenital heart disease.
It is to lend such people a helping hand that Dr. Gokhale floated Sahrudaya. Dr. Gokhale believes that virtues like generosity and magnanimity are very much alive among large sections of people and that they respond positively if only they are convinced of the magnitude of the coronary heart disease burden among the poor.
No one knows who the author of the following quote is but its philosophy is deeply ingrained in the psyche of Indians.