Tamil Nadu’s Christian Medical College opens ECP therapy centre

Chennai, Sep 22 (IANS) To promote non-surgical procedures for heart ailments, Christian Medical College and Hospital (CMCH) in Tamil Nadu’s Vellore town on Tuesday opened a new External Counter Pulsation (ECP) centre at the institution.

ECP therapy — a non-invasive procedure — helps stimulate the growth of new blood vessels in the heart and, in some cases, improves the flow of existing blood vessels. Often, ECP is used when physicians have exhausted other therapies.

The centre, inaugurated by Tamil Nadu Health Minister C. Vijaya Baskar, is the second such centre after the recently opened Madras Medical College.

“The ECP has been introduced at a cost of Rs.2 crore under a public private partnership and will cater to the patients for free. The treatment usually costs Rs.80,000 to Rs.1 lakh at private hospitals,” said R. Vimala, dean, Christian Medical College and Hospital.

S.S. Sibia, a leading ECP expert, said “This is the only non-invasive, no-drug treatment effective for patients suffering from heart failure, chest pain, shortness of breath, tiredness, those who have undergone angioplasty, those afraid of bypass surgeries or are at risk for surgeries.”

Sibia is also the director of Sibia Medical Centre.

The treatment provided at the centre is covered under the Chief Minister’s Comprehensive Medical Insurance Scheme and the revenue generated from the treatment will also help finance the hospital’s development, hospital authorities said.

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