Camila Children's Cancer Centre

Camila Children's Cancer Centre was established at Meenakshi Mission Hospital and Research Centre (MMHRC) in January 2010 by Dr. S. Jayabose. In this centre we provide modern treatment to all children with cancer regardless of their paying capacity. And, we work closely with the pediatricians and other physicians in the community so that patients can receive part of their treatment closer to home at their own physician's offices--- thus avoiding frequent visits and long trips to the cancer centre--and thus maintaining a high quality of life while undergoing cancer treatment. We also plan to train more pediatricians in the field of pediatric hematology-oncology and pursue research activities that will lead to cure for more children with cancer.

Dr. Jayabose, a graduate of Madurai Medical College (1968) received his DCH in University of Delhi (1970), and post-graducate training in Pediatrics at New York Medical College (1971-74); and Pediatric Hematology-Oncology at Long Island Jewish Medical Center in New York (1974- 76). After working as the chief of pediatric oncology for 30 years in New York Medical College and Westchester Medical Center, he has moved back to Madurai and established this children's cancer centre because of a great need for such a centre in the southern states Tamil Nadu; and named it Camila Children's Cancer Centre in memory of a 3 year old girl who lost her battle against cancer. In addition, he still holds an active academic appointment at New York Medical College as a professor of Pediatrics.

Since the opening of this centre in January 2010, the number of children treated here is growing rapidly, as more and more physicians and others become aware of this state-of-the-art facility. In order to meet the needs of the increasing number of patients, we have recently opened a new block for the Camila Children's Cancer Centre, which was inaugurated by our former President, Dr. Abdul Kalam on January 7th 2011. This new facility has 25 inpatient beds, 6 outpatient beds, 7 ICU beds and a treatment room with anesthesia support.

Inpatient Unit: The 25 inpatient beds are in the 6th and 7th floors of the hospital; and all beds are in private air-conditioned rooms with an additional sofa-bed for the comfort of the parent(s) caring for the child. Nine of these rooms are large deluxe rooms with attached bath rooms—for isolating and caring for children with low white blood cell counts who are susceptible to acquire life-threatening infections.

In addition to patient rooms, we have a children's play room in the 6th floor for the children to participate in various activities—under the direction and supervision of a full-time teacher.

The Outpatient Unithas 6 beds for patients who receive chemotherapy infusions and/or transfusions lasting for a few to several hours, but do not have to stay overnight at the hospital. In addition it has a procedure room for patients to receive anesthesia or sedation so that children can undergo procedures (like bonemarrow aspirate and/or biopsy or lumbar puncture (spinal tap) for intrathecal chemotherapy) without any pain.

Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU )/ Post-operative ward was opened in September 2011. Dr. Senthil Kumar, the physician-in-charge of the PICU is a formally trained, board-certified (DNB pediatric critical care) and experienced pediatric intensive care specialist (intensivist), joined us in July 2011; and the PICU was inaugurated in September of 2011.

Pediatric Surgery: Dr. C. Aravindan joined as our full-time pediatric surgeon in September 2011. He had obtained his M.S and DNB in Surgery from Stanley Medical College; and MCh pediatric surgery from Institute of Child Health (ICH) in 2007. Before he joined us he had worked for two years in Pondicherry Institute of Medical Sciences , and spent four years at Govt Medical College in Tuticorin (and active pediatric surgery practice). He also has a particular interest and experience in pediatric solid tumors such as neuroblastoma, Wilms' tumor, rhabdomyosarcoma, germ cell tumors etc.

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