Annual Report- April 2017-March 2018

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The vision of ASHWINI is to have a Health System for the tribals of the Gudalur Valley that is accessible, acceptable and owned by the community. We believe that communities can be empowered by ownership of Institutions that cater to their own needs as well as that of the mainstream.
ASHWINI was registered as a Charitable Society in 1990.


This year’s focus has increasingly been on improving the skill sets of the tribal team to enable them to manage the health programs.

A 3-day leadership training workshop was conducted by Ms. Julie George, former head of Skillshare International, for the junior staff to enhance their organizational skills and to motivate them to take on greater responsibility and ownership of the hospital. She laid a platform for the participants to interact, discuss problems and concerns of the various departments and to understand how one's work intersects with that of the others .It was amazing to observe the junior staff approach the issues and resolve them using alternate solutions.

The health volunteers, community and hospital staff benefitted from a combined exposure visit to various projects which they visited in small groups. We extend our sincere thanks to the Anaha Public Charitable Trust for sponsoring this event – it was a valuable team building exercise.

This year, each of the departments made their annual plan and budget. In an elaborate exercise, these budgets were sanctioned and formed the basis for operations for the coming year. This is an important step aimed towards the tribal team taking over the management.

Setting systems and standardization of the hospital operations and services has been a long felt need of ASHWINI. Obtaining NABH accreditation for the pre-entry level is a milestone achieved in this journey of improving our services & providing optimal patient care. We thank Bangalore Baptist Hospital for their support in this process.

The hospital has been as busy as ever. Thanks to innumerable friends and specialist doctors who continue to volunteer their services. Thanks to Dr Harshad & the CMC Vellore Radiology Dept, for the prompt reporting of CT scans; dramatically improving the level of care in this rural area.         
    • 13,620 tribals and 24,219 non tribals attended the outpatient clinics.
    • 1,797 patients were treated in the dental department. 
    • 1,252 tribal patients and 522 non-tribal patients were admitted and treated 
    • 327 deliveries and 348 surgeries were performed at GAH 
    • 3,173 X-rays, 2,158 ultrasounds, 189 endoscopies and 20 audiometries were done. The lab services are also being well utilized.

EEG is the latest addition to the list of services provided at GAH. Thanks to Dr.Anna Oommen for her concern and enthusiasm in reaching out to patients with epilepsy in the community. Lakshmy from the lab received EEG training for 2 months at CMC Vellore and now does the procedure with confidence. Dr.Vivek Mathew from CMC helps us to interpret the results. 

Bahmini, the hospital software was installed with the support of Thoughtworks, a corporate company. This has been streamlined and a majority of the records are now computerized. The ease with which the tribal team mastered this fairly complicated system has been remarkable and has drawn impressive comments from many who are involved with this.
As we grow, our staff switch roles and take on more responsibilities, making way for others. Ms.Ambika,who was the Nursing Superintendent, passes the baton to Ms.Seetha who is equally able and also a great disciplinarian.  

Updates of Community Programme
• Health volunteers camp at GAH – 2 camps were conducted, enthusiastic attendance by 49 and 95 health volunteers respectively along with all the health animators.
• Special Health screening camps for early detection of Chronic diseases and for TB were conducted.46 new cases detected.
• The use of the Open CHS software system for data collection and maintenance of records has been initiated.
We thank ARRIS,a corporate company for donation of nine tablets to be used in the villages as well as for funding the program implementation. Samanvay Research Foundation is implementing this application. The under-five growth monitoring and Antenatal care programs will be the first to benefit from this new system. Gradually, we plan to streamline other programs using this software

Community health statisticsCommunity health statistics 
Antenatals with >3 Check ups 91.50%Couple protection rate 69.30%
No of children whose growth was monitored (92.3%of all) 1214Normal weight (47.2 % of all)621
Moderate malnutrition (37.4% of all)492Severe malnutrition (7.6% of all)101
Complete immunisation at 2 yrs of age 94.50%Complete immunisation at 3yrs of age 97.90%
No of new patients detected with sickle cell disease.11No. of Sickle Cell Disease patients under treatment 322
No of patients with TB on Rx 33No of patients with chronic diseases 969
No of children on regular ICDS Utilization595No of Chronic patients under regular medication 797
No of Screening camps for NCD 29No of total Health volunteers305
No of people screened for NCD 729Suicide deaths 21
Infant mortality rate per 1000 live births21.1%Deliveries in hospital (94.9 % of all)281
Total tribal deliveries 296Maternal death1

Ms Shantha from Kadalakolly village died in the post partum period. She had delivered in the hospital and gone home well. She was brought two weeks later in coma; cause of which was unclear, possibly sepsis from a breast abscess. She was referred to Coimbatore medical college, but died soon after.

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 Mental Health Programme
• 62 new patients with mental illness were identified.
• 259 patients with mental illness are currently on treatment, of which 164 are suffering from severe mental disease.
• 12 patients with epilepsy were identified; a total of 53 patients are on treatment now.
• Health education in GTR schools were done to create awareness& to train teachers to identify students with epilepsy in early stages.

Disability Centre
• NIEPMD was responsible for establishing the centre in Gudalur. Their support lasted for three years and ended in Nov 2017. The centre then shifted to The GAH premises; temporarily in an unoccupied room.
• A generous donation from the Welton foundation, UK, has helped us to start the construction of a well-planned, albeit small, disability centre in the hospital premises.
• The Foundation for Speech and Hearing, UK, will be aiding us for new born hearing tests, providing hearing aid and speech therapy for children. Ms. Angela Harding, a UK based speech therapist, Dr.Ramesh, from St.Johns Medical College, Bangalore, the Unit of Hope at St. Johns and many others have been volunteering their time and resources to make the project a success. They have helped to train our staff, Krishnadas, in audiometry and screening procedures.
• Two tribal girls, Priya and Vinitha, have joined the team and taken responsibility to teach the differently abled children 
• A workshop was held by NIEMPD to create awareness about the facilities and schemes available for disability.

HIV/AIDS program:

The main support for this program is from “The Friends of Hope” UK. The focus of the program lies in health education, providing support to patients living with HIV/AIDS in the form of nutrition supplements, counseling etc. The incidence of HIV in the tribal population is almost nil, these services are rendered to the non-tribals in the area. 

HIV intervention data:

Pregnant mothers screened                    376
General clients                                        790
Positive client identified                              2
Health Education                                     251
Health education participants               2588
Home visit for PLWHA                                85


After a long struggle, we have finally received permission to run the ANM School. It was overwhelming to see the first batch of 20 nursing students take the pledge with the lamp in their hands during the inauguration ceremony, reading out loud the ethics and principles which one aspires to imbibe during the nursing journey. The ceremony was filled with vibrancy and colour as the students displayed their talent with various cultural activities. It was wonderful to have parents of the students assemble for this important event.
We have extended our canteen to have a convenient dining hall to accommodate the new batch of ANM nursing students 

Thanks to funding from the Poristes Stiftung, Switzerland, the training activities are forging ahead. We are also able to support many students to study in other institutions for courses that will help them to come back and improve the facilities here. Five students are studying for courses such as Hospital administration, special education, B. Pharm, Physiotherapy. Sijitha, a young Paniya girl, joined John Enoch college of Pharmacy, Trivandrum, for D. Pharma.
We are grateful to the Poristes Stiftung for this continuous support.
We started a Diploma in Dental Auxiliary training under BSS, and Priya, a young Paniya girl, has enrolled for the program.
We have been a host organization to students from TISS, MSc nurses from St. Johns, and social work students from numerous universities doing their internship with us on a regular basis.
15 medical elective students and 3 pre-med students participated in our Medical elective program. 20 nursing students from Australia did an internship; interacting with our nursing students and staff creating festivity in the campus. Our young students have benefited - increasing their awareness and exposure to the world outside.

Staff Inducted
We are fortunate each year to have people joining us to sustain the work.
Dr.Sheila,a pediatrician, and Dr.Evelyn, a dentist, joined the medical team.
Sunu joined the sickle cell team as a counselor.
Renuka,previously an intern at the Lab, took interest in joining the Billing team, and has now added to the team strength.
Anand completed his Diploma in Computers and joined the Information Management System of GAH.
Chitravalli joined the Admin & HR team to help with documentation.
Shabeer, an MPH graduate, joined us to coordinate & help with our research work.
Our last batch of BSS students- Selvi, Rasathi, Lakshimi, Bindu, Babitha, Suresh and Parvathi finished their internship and joined us as staff this year.
It was an event to celebrate when staff of AT&T in Bengaluru came to do a work camp at the hospital. Teaming up with the ASHWINI staff, their work ranged from painting the Balwady to clearing up old files. Our thanks to the team.

Research and Awards received
With research taking precedence last year, there are now four research projects running in parallel. 
We got Certification by DSIR (Department of Scientific & Industrial Research) as a SIRO (Scientific & Industrial Research Organisation).
A research paper from ASHWINI, by Dr.Susmita,won the first place at CMC Vellore research day.
A poster by Bhavna, Dr. Susmita and Dr. Mahantu was presented by Bhavana at the Royal College of Psychiatrists Annual Conference at Edinburgh,Scotland

Two dormitories and staff quarters for four families are up and in their final stages at the new land site. These are intended for students doing internship or for courses other than ANM. The support is received from The Poristes Stiftung.
PLENTI is a new project where highly skilled senior volunteers share their knowledge with the organizations at Gudalur. Last year 10 of them actively took part in teaching, helping with accounts, psychotherapy and improving administration. We extend a special thanks to all of our guests for making a difference. We look forward for more visits in the coming year.

Funding support:
The Tata Trusts have continued to fund the Community health programs. The interest from the TATA Corpus fund supports some of the hospital expenses.
The Poristes Stiftung has helped fund the Training program including infrastructure.
Some arrears from the Government have been finally released. However, there is still a large amount pending from the the National Health Mission towards reimbursement of inpatient care as well as the sickle cell program expenditure
The Nilgiri Adivasi Trust supports some aspects of the chronic disease program.
Friends of Hope supports the HIV program.
Anaha Trust extended support for the Health Volunteer training and Exposure visit.
AID, Columbus, Ohio, supported some of the maternal care activities.
GIVE India has been a regular donor.
The Toshniwal Trust and Dr.Prithvi Raval has continued support for the Dental program.
Many friends continue to support generously; especially pitching in when the going is tough!
We set up a Safety Net to cover some of the costs of delivering health care. We are grateful to many of our friends who have been making monthly contributions to this account.
The staff of ASHWINI also felt that they should pitch in to help the needier people in the community. Almost all the staff make a monthly contribution to this account. This is a heartwarming trend.
Our sincere gratitude to all the organizations and to each and every individual who has been a part of this journey.

  1. Donations in India -   Are exempt from income tax under section 80G of the income tax act. Money can be transferred directly to our account in SBI, Gudalur as ASHWINI DONATIONS, Current account No: 35765454150 IFSC Code: SBIN 001016 
  2. In USA -  Tax deductible donations can be made by check to Foundation Inc and mailed to Ms.Asmita Shendye, 35 Meyer Drive, Clifton, NJ 07012
  3. OR By - online donation through Tribal India Health Foundation and click the “donate” button on the page “How you can help”

  4. In the UK - Gift aid can be a benefit if donations are sent to Account name: From Here To There, Sort Code: 30-65-92, Account number: 16621468. Email:


Gudalur Adivasi Hospital
10/14 G2 G3, Kjotharvayal
Gudalur, The Nilgiris 


Phone: 91-4262-261645                




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