What a day to have the Mumbai FOM meet, 05.05.2012 and that too at the Mecca of Cancer research in our Country Tata Memorial Hospital.
10 years back on fine morning on 15.05.2002 when a young lady was handed over her appointment letter and a list of 21 people she surely wouldn't have thought that after 10 years that list of 21 will become so big and affecting lives of lakhs.
The “young” lady that’s being referred to is AMMA. She was assigned the responsibility of managing The MAX Foundation office of India on 15.02.2002.
By 8:00am as usual Amma & her dedicated Team were at Tata Hospital ensuring that all arrangements are in place. Banners were at Front gate ensured that no delegate would get lost in the ocean of people at TMH.
People began to pour in by 9:00am. Breakfast was arranged for all of them. After having the delicious Meduwada and Upma, people occupied the seats at the Rustom Choksi Auditorium of Tata Memorial Hospital. The meeting was called to attention at 10:00 for the National Anthem sung by the all. A beautiful poem written on Max by an anonymous author was read out by our very own Dr Jude and then translated in Hindi and read out by our very dear Shukla Aunty.
Dr. Reena Nair, Dr. Hari Menon, Dr. Navin Khattry, Hirabai and one small bacha and Amma were called on stage to light the Lamp and begin the meeting.
Dr. Reena Nair was called on stage to give the inaugural and welcome address. She shared the beautiful history of the Tata Memorial Hospital and the Vision behind it.
Amma then shared her 10 years and the TMF vision with old and new participants
The Next 1- ½ hours were very informative and educative with participants having an interactive question-and-answer session with Dr. Hari Menon & Dr. Navin Khattry. The doctors ensured that every question was answered and every concern addressed. What a wonderful way to build relationships between patients and physicians!
The post lunch there was an interactive Compliance session. All participants were segregated as per the colour of their badges into 4 groups and the Survivors were asked to fill a Compliance Survey form. Amma analysed the forms received & emphasizing on the need to ensure strict compliance. On the dais we had a panel of Survivors & care givers. Dr. Bakul Pandit, Ivan Lobo, Manoj Panicker, Abhishek Patidar, Amrita Patidar & myself, Pramod John George. All these 6 shared practical experiences, experienced by them which should have been beneficial to all participants.
The meeting ended at 4:00pm with Tea & Biscuits, fond farewells and promises to meet again and meet soon