VASU brought 27 patients  from Mahendraganj, 13 from Ampati, to GMCH for treatment

Shillong, Sept 16: The Voluntary Association for Social Upliftment (VASU) is a registered NGO has brought 40 patients, 27 from Mahendraganj and 13 from Ampati, to Guwahati today for treatment in Guwahati Medical College Hospital (GMCH) of the skin infection.

VASU had to spend substantial amount of money to hire a bus to bring the patients to Guwahati, escorted them by our 6 volunteers and also arrange accommodation. The NGOs could have bought medicines with that amount. Initially Government  of Meghalaya tried to say that it is only post-flood fungal infection.

It can’t be post flood fungal infection, because it has been there than the floods. Later they clarified that it is not post flood fungal infection. Many of the patients have told the NGO that they have been having this disease for several years and the local medicines given in the local CHC are not effective at all, so they have stopped going to the local CHC. Moreover, there is no skin specialist in the local CHC.

They sent a team of doctors, who went by the OPD record of CHC, Mahendraganj for three months,that is June, July and August 2019. They had given the figures as June: 313 cases, July: 359 cases and Augist : 207 cases, that is a total of 879 cases. What about the months before June’ 2019  If they go back by one year, the figure will be in thousands. Even 879 is a huge number.

Since the figure is steady around 300, it has been brushed off as no significant increase over previous months, and hence there is no spurt in the disease! This is a totally ridiculous conclusion to draw. Moreover, all the villagers are not going to the CHC, so the OPD records are not an indication of the actual magnitude of the problem.

The doctors should have gone to the villages and taken a head count. It also appeared in the newspapers that the team of doctors stated that the skin infection is because of the villagers living in unhygienic conditions and taking bath in dirty ponds. If they are living in unhygienic conditions, what measures have been taken by the Government  under Swachh Bharat Abhiyan and NRHM, The statement that they take bath in dirty ponds is not true.

They all have tube wells. They take bath in tube well water. The Govt also tried to project the problem as endemic. The language used was such that there was no solution. If the problem is endemic, some special measures should have been taken. It can’t be treated as a problem without a solution and allowed to remain as such. This is a serious community health issue. If it continues like this, this skin infection may lead to more serious issues.

The Vee Gee Industrial Enterprises Pvt Ltd, Faridabad who are major manufacturers of Steel Metal Components. They have donated generously. The University of Science and Technology (UTSM), Meghalaya,provided accommodation and volunteers said, Smti  Ms. Shabnam Mohan Raj CEO, Voluntary Association for Social Upliftment.


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