CR’s HIV clinic now treats a total of 124 patients, having expanded from 90 patients in 2010. CR provides free anti-retroviral therapy and diagnoses and treats the opportunistic infections that HIV patients are so susceptible to. Many of these patients also receive reimbursement for clothing and travel costs as well as clothes and food for their families. CR focuses on unmet needs in Kolkata’s public healthcare infrastructure. When CR first began its HIV clinic, it focused on offering second line therapy since government hospitals only offered first line. Now, the government has expanded its charity services to include second line therapy, so CR has become focused on providing treatment to those resistant to first and second line therapy. Doctors at government hospitals frequently refer their resistant cases to CR because they know that CR provides a safety net for such complicated patients.
CR serves as a provider of DOTS (directly observed therapy) for TB which is the standard of care throughout the world. In 2011-2012 (the last year for which complete statistics are available), 102 new cases of TB were diagnosed at CR’s Belgachia clinic. CR has a 85% cure rate which is outstanding given its difficult patient population. Multi-drug resistant (MDR) TB and extremely drug-resistant (XDR) TB are becoming huge problems of global proportions, and CR currently cares for 45 patients with MDR-TB and 10 patients with XDR-TB.
Estimates vary, but close to one million people live on the streets of Kolkata, including 250,000 children. CR’s Street Medicine program brings a mobile clinic with a local MD and a nurse to settlements in the slums and street. The Street Medicine team serves as crucial outreach to the unserved masses. Its refers people to public hospitals for needed diagnostics and therapy, and sends children in need of vaccinations to nearby CR clinics and ensures they follow up. In 2011-2012, 826 adults and 803 children living on the street were screened and treated and referred to hospitals or to CR clinics for follow-up as needed.
CR’s Chitpur clinic provides medical care for 198 patients with Hansen’s Disease (formerly called ‘leprosy’). Patients are cured of the disease, but need ongoing support care to help them deal with the deformities and disabilities that the disease left them forever. CR provides special shoes made in its Handicraft workshops that help protect the feet of patients which are vulnerable to damage and infection. Chitpur recently finished a new building – for years local residents and companies forced it to put up its tarp roof anew each day, and take it down in the evening, so that it did not appear as if a group of lepers were taking up permanent residence in their neighborhood. The clinic now has increased legitimacy and acceptance with its new building. Social awareness, information, and acceptance are an important part of eradicating Hansen’s disease from India, where it still infects over 200,000 new patients per year.
CR delivers over a thousand immunizations annually.
In 2011-2012, CR paid for 7 patients to have cardiac surgery, 28 patients to receive cancer chemotherapy, 3 patients to have cataract surgery.
CR’s disability clinic currently provides a “one-stop shop” for 149 disabled children. They offer speech and occupational therapy as well.