Mr. Nazim Hussain, a resident of Cliton and a retired professional deep sea diver has been running a small medical aid centre out of a van for the past 5 years in this quiet neighbourood.
He is assisted by Dr. Alam, who spends roughly 3 hours per day, often more, examining patients, analysing their needs, prescribing medicines and dispensing them for free to whoever needs them. Dr. Alam runs a private practice, but comes from Shadman Town to assist in this venture.
“The key word here is need” says Mr. Hussain. His van, that carries this facility, makes it very clear that this is a service for the needy. “I still receive visits from about 3 or 4 people, per day, that walk out of an airconditioned car and ask for free medicine” he goes on to say. Sometimes affluent people bring their employees here to have them checked up, and end up asking free medicine for them.
The small clinic is located in the KFC lane near boat basin. When I asked why this location, Mr. Hussain says that in this posh neighbourhood, there are many poor workers. Those that work on daily wages nearby at boatbasin, low level office staff, housemaids that work from home to home are generally the ones that come here for treatment.
“We used to treat people for Tuberculosis too” Dr. Alam adds, “but proper treatment for tuberculosis requires constant care and medication for a longer period of time, which patients are not to careful about. once the symptoms subside, they stop coming for check ups and medicine, which not only results in incomplete treatment, but also adds a strain on resources required for this treatment”.
Mr. Hussain added, “There are many things we cant do here, like tests etc, and if certain evaluations are needed by specialists, we recommend these patients to certain specialists and test centres that we know personally, and those specialists and test centres try to do their best to assist these patients when they carry our referral slip”.
When I asked if they travel from place to place in their van to provide this service, Mr. Hussain added “No we don’t. For a simple reason. If we travel, this not only adds to the cost of running this project, but also has a time cost to it. More time will be spent in the many traffic jams in the city, time that is better spent on patients in an area where there is no low cost medical facility avaialble for these poor workers”.
Whats the catch? Nothing. Mr. Hussain insists he will not refuse a needy patient. However, it is upto those coming here to truly assess the fact of how needy they are. One must look at the ones that are more deserving.
Mr. Hussain does not accept any donations, nor is he affiliated or assisted by any NGO. “This is a purely self funded, self managed project”, he added.
It is people like these who work for the betterment of humanity, in their own limited resources, helping people, who need to be commended.
A great job indeed Mr. Hussain and Dr. Alam.
Does anyone know of any more ventures like this? Share them with us and help us spread the good.