After India gained independence, Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister, made it his life’s goal to create a developing country with a focus on the Sciences. His dream was to create a scientific hub that could be an environment of expansion for medical research and education within the subcontinent and along the South East Asia region.
Thanks to the generous financial support of £1 million from the New Zealand Government under the Colombo Plan in 1952, the All-India Institute of Medical Science (AIMMS) was finally created in 1956 as an autonomous institution through an Act of Parliament.
AIIMS is currently an institution of national reputation dedicated to improving standards of education for Undergraduate and Post – graduate Medical teaching across all its branches in India, bringing together learning facilities for professionals related to healthcare activity. Education and research are conducted in 42 disciplines, and over 600 papers are published each year.
TruScreen, a NZ listed company, is now collaborating with AIIMS to conduct a project researching the use of a real-time opto-electric cervical cancer screening technology to screen Indian women in both a rural and urban setting.
TruScreen is an objective, self-checking digital system that can be used with minimal training of medical or paramedical staff, and without the infrastructure and resource costs associated with cytology-based screening and with an accurate result every time.
“In terms of cancer deaths, India carries one fourth of the global burden. It is estimated that for every 8 minutes one woman dies of cervical cancer” said Professor J B Sharma, Lead Investigator at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in New Delhi.
Screening will be conducted to the AIIMS hospital Delhi, and CHRSP Ballabgarh, a satellite of AIIMS that services 28 villages in Haryana State. Haryana Health Department has taken steps for control and prevention of cervical cancer and will take further measures to create awareness among the people, upgrade diagnostic and lab and treatment facilities in the district hospitals and in rural areas. “Since survival rates improve if the condition is diagnosed and treated early, screening for cervical cancer is important. Most women present with an advanced state of the disease and treatment is too late,” Sharma added.