The management of The Mission Hospital was clear from the outset that the hospital would not only set the highest standards for quality healthcare but also that of good corporate citizenship. In line with its long term vision to set up full training facilities, in order to adequately address those responsibilities even during the initial years while keeping in focus the training of skilled personnel for healthcare industry, in 2008 the hospital signed a long-term agreement with Sparsh Foundation – the pioneers of industry tagged vocational training in this country.
Sparsh Foundation, a small, autonomous, Indian, not-for-profit Society, headquartered in Kolkata, specialises in planning, designing & executing training modules for the youth – specially from financially disadvantaged families who have been compelled to discontinue studies in formal academics at various levels in school, largely due to poverty related issues. The goal continues to be development of easily replicable prototypes of short-duration, vocational training courses for the millions of unskilled, academic dropouts in India, in various trades that offer huge employment potential in a new economic order.
Having already pioneered India’s first garment manufacturing training program conducted in association with NIFT & AEPC, Sparsh Foundation had, in 2007, begun India’s first & only Medical Technician courses with minimum entry level at class 10 pass only. The healthcare industry in Bengal was then growing at an amazing rate under a state initiative to turn the city into a healthcare hub, with 4000 beds added in specialty & multi-specialty hospitals only in just 5 years. This was thus a perfect match between the burgeoning industry requirement for skilled professionals to handle latest technology driven equipment and the need to provide adequate livelihood training to lakhs of children in the state who drop out of school every year at that level.
Sparsh Foundation had forayed into Medical Technician Training courses with north India’s first ever formal course in CSSD, conducted in association with the Apollo Gleneagles Hospital (Educational Trust) in Kolkata under affiliation of the West Bengal State Council of Technical Education. The Mission Hospital well understood the crucial importance of such courses not only in ensuring the providing of quality service to patients but also in providing the lifeline to a better future to a mass of disadvantaged youth of the state. And so readily agreed to becoming a training partner (providing infrastructure & impartation of technical knowledge & skills) in Sparsh Foundation ‘s hugely successful MTT Program.
With a shared view of the hospital’s internal requirements for human resources over the long run, Sparsh Foundation initiated the MTT program in the Durgapur hospital with technician courses in CSSD (Central Sterile & Supply Dept.), OR (Operation Room) & EMT-CCU (Emergency Medical Team – Critical Care Unit). All pass-outs (over 500 until date) have been gainfully employed – many continuing to work in the hospital itself, while others have become valued employees with big private healthcare brands as Fortis, Manipal & Apollo and even some state government hospitals. Plans are on the anvil to extend program scope to technician courses in Dialysis, Cath Lab, Path Lab, Phlebotomy etc.
To make it possible and easy on all students, with interest & ability, to undertake these courses, Sparsh Foundation arranges for selected trainees to receive systemic, pre-approved, interest-free, education loans with repayment holiday and without need for any individual collateral, security or guarantor – to part finance program cost, the residual amount being provided as grant. Between that and the dedicated impartation of knowledge & skills by faculty from within the hospital and beyond, disadvantaged boys & girls today have the chance to bright futures they could not dream of earlier.
In the years to come, the hospital, through this hugely successful association with Sparsh Foundation, expects to be able to offer hundreds of others the same opportunity. Thereby saving lives in more ways than one!!