The Tata Medical Center (TMC) was inaugurated on May 16, 2011, by Ratan Tata. It is a philanthropic initiative aimed specifically at helping cancer patients from the east and northeast of India and also from Bangladesh. The centre is led by its director Dr Mammen Chandy.
TMC’s stated mission is to promote the prevention and cure of cancer patients and provide rehabilitation and palliative care to them. A special emphasis will be given to children suffering from cancer. TMC is a quality cancer-care facility that caters especially, though not exclusively, to the poor of the region. The first phase of the project has space for 170 patients, with a provision for extending capacity to a further 150 patients (figures do not include outpatients). About 50 per cent of the beds are earmarked for free treatment of the underprivileged. The remaining 50 per cent of patients will be in the subsidised or paying categories, and the money accrued will be utilised to support the institution. The rest of the centre’s expenses will be covered by charitable donations.
Situated at Rajarhat on the outskirts of Kolkata, it is easily accessible from downtown Kolkata and the city’s airport. The centre will soon house a shelter, called Premashraya, that will provide free stay and food for patients and their relatives.
TMC will be managed by the Tata Medical Center Trust, which has been formed for this purpose. The centre has outpatient, inpatient, therapeutic, diagnostic, telemedicine and other services.
TMC has state-of-the-art equipment to ensure top-notch diagnostic and treatment services. It has disease management teams with experts from different streams, such as surgery, radiation oncology, medical oncology, pathology, radiology, psychiatry and medical social work.
The Rs3,500-million funding for the project and an additional Rs400 million corpus deposit was provided by Tata trusts, various Tata companies and Tata Sons, the promoter holding company of the Tata group. Several well-wishers from India and abroad contributed to the noble cause. Besides, the Government of India and the Government of West Bengal also supported the project.
TMC aims to be an organisation that excels in services, education and research in the field of cancer. More than 3 million Indians suffer from cancer, but facilities to treat those living with the disease are few and far between in this country. The centre marks the realisation of a dream to which many people have contributed, and adds another chapter to a Tata tradition of philanthropy.