Old-Timers bid Adieu to Dr Prabha Adikhari-the Pioneer of Geriatric
Mangaluru: She Came, She Conquered, She conquered the hearts of patients, well-wishers, friends and people that she knew. And now that she is retiring from her prestigious position as left everyone heartbroken, especially the member of Nava Chaitanya, an NGO for the seniors affected with Alzheimer’s/Dementia. Although it was time for Dr Prabha Adhikari to retire, but she is very reluctant to stay away from the position that she now retires at Kasturba Hospital – as they say, “All’s well that ends well”, Dr Adhikari has done much to the patients, senior citizens and others beyond her expectations, and her efforts and contributions towards the people with Alzheimer’s and Dementia have been very much appreciated by everyone, and there is no doubt we could mention Dr Prabha Adhikari as the Genius and Pioneer in Geriatric care.
Dr Prabha Adhikari who has been the backbone of ‘Nava Chaitanya’ and its founder has worked hard for the benefit and happiness of Senior citizens. If you walk with a stoop and slow unsure steps and elbow movement is erratic, it’s an indication of Parkinson’s Disease, which is another type of dementia, which Boxer Late Mohammed Ali was suffering from. Being Old is a natural process. There is tremendous wisdom and experience that comes with Age, which should be utilized. Keeping the Elders active will help in, preventing the delay in the onset of dementia. By helping the AD-affected, youth can empathize and become sensitive human beings.
The formal function began with lighting of the traditional lamp by chief guest – Dr M Venkatraya Prabhu-Dean Kasturba Medical College, Mangaluru, along with other dignitaries on the dais namely, Dr Anand Venugopal- Medical superintendent, KMC; Dr Prabha Adhikari-Founder Director-Nava Chaitanya; Dr B Sathish Rao-Additional Professor, KMC: Kusuma N Rao- President, Nava Chaitanya; and Surendra Bekal-Secretary of Nava Chaitanya. Guests of honour for the function were-Jerardin D’Souza – founder of Mangalore Alzheimer’s Association, Premalatha-HR, KMC, and TG Shenoy-member KMC Ashraya..
The dignitaries on the dais spoke and complimented Dr Prabha Adhikari for her tireless efforts in raising Nava Chaitanya to greater heights and caring for those affected by Alzheimer’s and Dementia. After being felicitated in her address Dr Adhikari said, “I am grateful to KMC for supporting me in my ventures. It’s because of KMC what I am now, and I will remember KMC wherever I will be. KMC has done everything in my efforts, but I am just an instrument. We should all help those affected with Alzheimer’s and bring a change in their lives”.
KMC Dean Dr MV Prabhu addressing the gathering said, “On the outset, I compliment Dr Adhikari for her contribution towards KMC and those affected with Alzheimer’s and Dementia. Dr Adhikari is a good Samaritan and a humanitarian who has shown extreme love and care towards the seniors with Alzheimer’s/dementia. Just like her parents, Dr Adhikari has in her genes, helping those in medical needs. As a mentor, Dr Adikhari has inculcated the spirit of being good Samaritan, dedication, sincerity, love and care towards the patients”. He advised that the present students should not only get high grades in their academics but also learn how to care for people.
Dr Prabha Adhikari was felicitated by various organizations affiliated with Nava Chaitanya.
In her presidential speech, Dr Adhikari said, “Elderly people should be thought of more often. Elders have served the nation in many ways, they have rendered their services selflessly. During early days, every programme or function used to begin with the blessings of the elders, but these days no one cares about elders nor seeks blessings from them. We need to be little more alert when elders are around us because the suffering of elders is often in silence. If you notice changes in a senior’s personality or behavior, you should start to question what is going on or report it. We need to think of each other. We need to care for the elders, love them, respect and help them when they are in need”.
“Yes, Alzheimer’s Disease’ mostly attacks the Elderly – Our Elders are having their unique challenges. There are various types of abuses our elders suffer. It may be inadvertent or conscious. It is our effort to create awareness about these abuses and to prevent such abuses. September is Alzheimer’s Awareness Month, I urge everyone to take an active part and support the Alzheimer’s month. Alzheimer’s is an issue facing communities around the world, India and even in Mangaluru. It’s not good to see our elders treated badly. They’re the ones that gave us our own culture and put us in good hands. It is nice to see that a few organizations and Communities are really involved in their elders’ concerns and are starting to voice them as well. So it’s good” added Dr Adhikari.
Er. Jerardin D’Souza acknowledged and praised Dr Prabha Adhikari for being the Force, A true Leader, a pioneer in Geriatric behind KMC-Nava Chaitanya, for a thunderous applause. The vote of thanks was delivered by Surendra Bekal – Secretary of Nava Chaitanya.
About Dr Prabha Adhikari M R:
Qualifications – MBBS from KMC Hubli in 1980, M.D. General Medicine, KMC Mangalore, PG Diploma in Geriatric Medicine from IGNOU, PG Diploma in Clinical Research from Catalyst, Bachelor in Public Health from Sparkmans Centre University of Alabama.
Additional Courses: 6 month Certificate course in Biostatistics, Manipal University, 4 weeks Certificate Course in Geriatric Palliative care & TOT Programme by MEDIACION Germany
Present Designation: Professor of Internal Medicine, Kasturba Medical College, Mangalore, Course director Geriatric Palliative Care Manipal University
Former Positions – Research director Kasturba Medical College, Mangalore 2005-2010, Director of clinical Research Manipal Acunova, HOD Medicine KMC, Mangalore1997-2002, Dr TMA Pai Endowment Chair in Geriatrics and Gerontology, Manipal University years 2013-2015
Current Positions: Professor of Medicine in charge of Geriatrics, Director of KMC Nava Chaitanya, a centre for active ageing at KMC, Mangalore. Secretary of Spoorthi Charitable Trust for the elderly and Vice President of PAGE – People’s Association For Geriatric Empowerment, Mentor, Mangalore Alzheimer`s Association
Teaching Experience: 29years. Guided 11 PhD students of which 8 have completed PhD
Research: Area of Research: Infectious diseases, Geriatrics, Diabetes, Active ageing, Genetics.
Principal Investigator for ICMR –INDIAB study
Received Research grant from ICMR, DST, ITREOH programme of Fogarthy Foundation, NIH, RSSDI, KRSSDI, API Karnataka Chapter, Manipal Acunova.
Geriatric Services – I have created 8 centres for active ageing in the city of Mangalore and also set up 7 free Diabetes clinics catering to the needs of 2000 older diabetic patients, I have organized 3500 home care visits over the last 5 years . I am in charge of 60 bedded Geriatric Palliative Care at KMC Mangalore for the last 22 years, I run a comprehensive geriatric clinic at KMC Mangalore and also in my own clinic. I am also running a memory clinic and an active ageing programme for those with impaired memory using a module called IDEA developed by Manchester University.
Innovations: Developed a software for Comprehensive Geriatric assessment with a software engineer and developed an android application of the same with support from centre for software development Manipal University.