On 22nd March 2014, FOM Patna in association with The Max Foundation had organized its seventhregional meet at I.G.I.M.S. and witnessed the participation of more than 270 people from all over Bihar and Jharkhand. Out of excitement me, Amma and Ayeshah arrived at the venue as early as at 8 am (one and half hour prior to the schedule time) and surprised to see some of the patients already waiting there. Soon we started with our work. Amma started registering patients while I and Ayeshah put up the backdrop and banners.
Then Dr. Rajesh (HOD, Regional Cancer Centre, I.G.I.M.S.) along with his team arrived and helped us in arranging the things in the auditorium. Meanwhile other members of FOM Patna: Akash, Rashmi, Ashish & Rahul too arrived and had taken charge of the whole floor managing the registration which was one of the most important and responsible job in a flawless manner. After getting registered themselves all the patients along with their caregivers went for tea and snacks. Each patient was given colourful I-Card.
Within an hour the auditorium was fully packed with many people seen standing patiently to get the meet start. The meet started with our National Anthem followed by lighting of lamp by our Chief Guest, Dr. N.R. Biswas (Director of I.G.I.M.S.), Dr. Rajesh and Amma. Dr. Rajesh welcomed the crowd and asked Dr. Biswas for to say few words. Dr. Biswas in his small speech appreciated the sincere work done by Max Foundation and Novartis in the field of cancer. Then it was turn of Amma’s presentation. In her presentation Amma had shown the journey of Max Foundation during the past decade also picturing the working of Novartis in improving the life of cancer patient all over the world. The whole crowd was spell bound with the informative presentation and accolades with a big round of applause. After the presentation it was time for “MAXIMO” Launching in Patna. Ayeshah the most beautiful face with a very kind heart of Max Foundation had done the honor by telling the story of Maximo with action to the children present there in the auditorium. It was simply a magical moment when all the children along with their Ayeshah didi tried to fly like Maximo spreading their little arms. Thanks to Ayeshah who won the hearts of all the patients and caregivers in her maiden visit to Patna. It was then turn for the most awaited programme, the open house session, which is the hallmark of any FOM Meet. Doctors who had given their valuable time includes Dr. Rajesh, Dr. Sangeeta, Dr. Ridu and Dr. Govind. Patients posed their queries and got a first-hand response from the different doctors. The session which lasted for one & half hour covered all the medical aspects of CML with side effects of Glivec. I then thanked the doctors along with other staff of I.G.I.M.S. for their valuable support and requested the gathering for launch. As the attendance was beyond our expectation, we have to arrange for more food packets instantly. After the launch we all again gathered in the auditorium. While children were given Maximo colouring book to show their hidden talent, patients were given feedback forms regarding the meeting to fill.
After the feedback session, the most interesting part of the Meet came into action – DRAMA THERAPY. The entire crowd was divided into four groups according to the colour of I-card they were wearing i.e., Orange Group, Yellow Group, Blue Group & Green Group. Amma explained a story of a family in that a father got diagnosed with CML and advised by his friend to see a good oncologist. On their visit, the doctor explained them about CML and cleared the myth that cancer cannot be cured or controlled. Further the doctor advised that patient for Glivec and advised them to get it through GIPAP programme.
The whole story was divided into four parts and given one to each group to enact on the stage. Only 10 minutes time was given for the preparation. Surprisingly all the groups performed superbly enthralling all the audience. The concept was a great success.
Finally we winded up the meeting with a promise to meet next year.
FOM Patna, Prashant