Cancer is one of the worst diseases that befalls hundred and thousands of people each year. It is a disheartening illness that not only tends to diminish one’s physicality but one’s personality as well. The saddest part is that while there is are treatments to keep it at bay, there is no cure for the disease. And most times, people are in such pain, they want to die with some dignity. That’s when they choose to enter a place like the Shanti Avedna Sadan in Loutolim, South Goa.
What is Shanti Avedna Sadan?
This is India’s first Hospice. It’s a place that takes care of the terminally ill cancer patients. As its logo reads, ‘Shanti Avedna Sadan, Where there is love there is no pain’. The word Shanti means ‘peace’, the word Avedna signifies ‘the absence of pain’ and Sadan means ‘a home’. Therefore, quite literally, the name means “Peace in the absence of pain home”.
The Shanti Avedna Sadan Trust is a Charitable Trust which runs the Shanti Avedna Sadan as an NGO dedicated to providing a number of services to terminally ill cancer patients. The Institution aims to:
- Care for the advanced and terminally ill Cancer patients and those cancer patients suffering from AIDs also.
- Offer this care to all who need it, irrespective of community caste or creed.
- Give preference to the poor and needy.
- Give this care totally free of cost.
- Conduct research for palliation in Advanced Cancer.
Care given to patients at Shanti Avedna Sadan
For a cancer patient, the care required lies on many levels. A terminally ill patient’s needs are many: medical, nursing, mental, social, spiritual and financial. Therefore there are people from different branches that are necessary for such a patient’s wellbeing and morale. It’s a team effort with the team consisting of doctors, nurses counsellors, volunteers and spiritual advisors, to offer “total: care to the patient.
As far as medical care and medicines are concerned, there isn’t much that can be done for a terminally ill patient. Shanti Avedna Sadan is the last resort and is meant to ensure that the patient is made comfortable and doesn’t suffer while waiting for their Maker to receive them. If a cancer patient is in pain, measures like giving them pain relief in the form of morphine or other regulated opiates. There is no Intensive Care Unit in hospices like these and patients are allotted beds in the wards.
Shanti Avedna Sadan, not only counsels the terminally ill in a bid to help them come to terms with their situation but also their families. The Trust has its main branch in Bombay with two more branches in Goa and Delhi respectively. Vist their website for more details if necessary. You can also check the article done by Navhind Times about the Shanti Avedna Sadan.