Corporatization led to graft in healthcare – G N Rao, Dr Sriram Chandra, Dr Chandana Chakrabarti

By December 17, 2011videos page

The Talk

Can you trust your doctor?

The medical profession is the noblest of all. The doctor, and the hospital, are expected to place patient interest above everything else, and do all to ensure that the patient’s health is taken care of in the best possible manner.

Do doctors, hospitals and pharma companies think you, the patient, is the most important person for them and that they should think of you, even above themselves, in all they do? Is the doctor cheating you? Can you trust him and them?

The healthcare industry is plagued with many ills and malpractices. All these place patient interest nowhere near the top. Commercialisation and corruption are rampant, leaving the patient helpless.

This meeting explores all facets of the healthcare industry – the good and the bad and aims to enlighten the consumer. For the sake of your and your family’s health, do not miss this manthan.
Dr G N Rao, founder of L V Prasad Eye Institute, neurologist Dr. Sriram Chandra, and writer-activist Chandana Chakrabarti head the discussion on corruption in medicare and how to eliminate it.

Source :

Date : 17-12-2011

Dr G N Rao, Founder, LV Prasad Eye Institute

Dr Sriram Chandra, Neurologist, Mediciti Hospital

Chandana Chakrabarty, Writer, Actor, Activist

Gullapalli N Rao completed his medical school and ophthalmology residency in India following which he pursued the subspeciality of cornea.  After fellowship training with Drs. Jules Baum and James Aquavella, he continued on the clinical faculty at the University of Rochester until 1986 where he was involved in clinical care, teaching and research.  His research interests included corneal endothelium, specular microscopy, neurobiology of cornea, contact lenses, corneal transplantation and Keratoprosthesis.

In 1986 he moved back to India to establish the well-known L V Prasad Eye Institute for which he was the Founder Director.  The Institute is renowned for its innovative models of eye care delivery from primary to advanced tertiary care levels and is a WHO Collaborating Centre and one of the three global resource centres for the VISION 2020: The Right to Sight, the global initiative to eliminate avoidable blindness.  It has one of the most comprehensive corneal services in the world encompassing clinical care, education, research and planning.

Dr.Rao held many international leadership positions and is on the Boards of many organisations in the area of cornea as well as in the prevention of blindness activities around the world.  His standing in this area is epitomised by his appointment as Secretary – General of the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (1998 – 2004) and then as Chairman, Board of Trustees, President and CEO (2004 – 2008) (the first ever to be given all these responsibilities).  He has played a key role in initiating, coordinating and mobilising Vision 2020: The Right to Sight activities, which will improve eye care worldwide and provided exemplary leadership to this program.

Dr Rao’s main areas of interest are Corneal Diseases and Eye Banking, Community Eye Health, Health Policy & Planning, Eye Care Reforms.  He developed innovative models of eye care delivery and eye banking systems in addition to expanding his research interest into corneal infections, public health aspects of ophthalmology and operations research.

Dr.Rao has received numerous honours and awards, notable among which are – one of the Chairs of Academia Ophthalmologica Internationalis; International Blindness Prevention Award by the American Academy of Ophthalmology; Pisart Vision Award by Lighthouse International; Prince Abdulaziz International Prevention of Blindness Award; G.B. Bietti International Award for Prevention of Blindness by the Italian Society for Prevention of Blindness; Padma Shri – Republic Day Civilian Award from the President of India; “Fellow qua surgeon” of the Royal College of Physicians & Surgeons, Glasgow; Honorary Doctorate of Science from University of New South Wales, Sydney and Honorary Doctorate of Medicine from University of Melbourne in Australia; Jose Rizal Medal from the Asia-Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology for outstanding contributions to ophthalmology in Asia-Pacific region; World Cornea Congress medal from International Cornea Society for outstanding contributions for the advancement of cornea specialty globally (2010);  Honorary Doctorate of Medicine from Dr. N.T.R. Health University, Vijayawada, India; Bernard Streiff Medal for Outstanding contributions to International Ophthalmology from Academia Ophthalmologica Internationalis.  Bernardo Streiff Medal for Outstanding contributions to International Ophthalmology from Academia Ophthalmologica Internationalis (2010); Kupfer Award for outstanding accomplishments as a researcher, ophthalmologist and humanitarian, by The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (2011).

He published over 250 papers and on the Editorial Boards of many journals.

He is married to Pratibha, a politician and a social activist and has a son and a daughter.




Dr. Sriram Chandra Damaraju is a neurosurgeon practicing in Hyderabad since 1998.  He is currently working out of his own clinic, Lakshmi Neuro Centre, and Mediciti Hospital.

Education -Born and brought up in Hyderabad. Studied in Hyderabad, Public School, Begumpet.  Joined M.B.B.S. Christian Medical College, Vellore in 1985.  Trained in Neurosurgery in Vellore from 1991 to 1997.  The Department of Neurological Sciences is the oldest department being established in 1989.  Finished his M.Ch. In Neurosurgery and he is also a Diplomate of the National Board of Examination, New Delhi.

Experience -Lakshmi Neuro Centre, Himayathnagar, Hyderabad      1998 -This centre specializes in Neuro-rehabilitation.  Established along with Dr. Pamela Narayan, this centre focusses on the rehabilitation of patients with significant disability following neurological injury such as stroke, head and spinal injury.  In addition, several neurosurgical procedures are performed. He has published papers in various international journals.  Some of the work especially on children with craniofacial anomalies has been aired on Discover Channel.

Mediciti Hospital, Hyderabad            1998 –

Dr. Damaraju established the neurosurgical services in Mediciti Hospital in 1998.  Since then hundreds of brain and spine surgeries have been performed here.  The focus is on micro-neurosurgery and spine surgery.

Mediciti Institute of Medical Sciences, Medchal, R.R. Dist, A.P.  2008 –

With the development of a medical college, Dr. Damaraju is developing the Neurosurgical Services at this medical college hospital which is based 30 kms outside Hyderabad.  The aim is to develop a world-class teaching neurosurgical department over a period of time.

Skills – Dr. Sriram Damaraju has extensive experience in various aspects of care for people with neurological injury.  He is also well-versed in issues relating to establishment of neurosurgical services, having set them up in a major private hospital in Hyderabad.  The provision of affordable specialized healthcare is an abiding interest. He is passionate in increasing awareness of head injury especially among college and school students.  He has previously liaised with the Hyderabad Police on the importance of helmet wearing among two-wheeler drivers. His other interests include computers, carpentry and physical fitness.

Chandana Chakrabarti is a rationalist, writer, actor and social activist. She is currently Director of Sukriti, a consultancy organisation.

Past Chairperson of the Hyderabad Chapter of FICCI-FLO, Chandana Chakrabarti was with the National Knowledge Commission till 2008.

She was for a decade with the CCMB, Hyderabad, an internationally renowned basic research laboratory of the CSIR, where she played a crucial role in the building the institute along with its founder.

She has written close to 200 major articles in well-known magazines, newspapers and books published in India and abroad. She has also co-authored two books, “The Saga of Indian Science since Independence: In a Nutshell” published by Universities Press, and “Angels, Devil and Science, published by National Book Trust.

As a social activist, she has been a part of several non-governmental organizations.  She is the Convenor of The MARCH, a voluntary organisation based in Hyderabad, whose efforts have led to the setting up of a national system of accreditation of diagnostic laboratories to ensure quality and reliability, and also the national guidelines for accreditation of infertility clinics.

Widely travelled in India and abroad as an invited participant and speaker at major international meetings, she represented India at the World Youth Leadership Summit held at the UN Headquarters in New York in 1995. She has anchored and moderated several live programmes and nationally telecast television programmes on a variety of issues.

Her abiding interest in art and culture is evident in the large number of theatre groups, dancers, singers, musicians, painters and sculptors she has showcased over the years.  She was intimately involved with Children’s Film Society of India in organizing the International Children’s Film festivals in Hyderabad.

She has acted in several Telugu feature films, some of which have been super-hits, such as “Anand” and “Vikramarkudu”.

She has been elected a Fellow of the prestigious World Academy of Art and Science, and a member of Third World Organisation of Women Scientists.