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TIRUPATI: Tata Trusts today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) for the construction of a state-of-the-art cancer centre in Tirupati. The MoU was signed by Dr. Sambasiva Rao, EO, TTD and R. Venkataramanan, Managing Trustee, Tata Trusts, in the presence of R.K. Krishna Kumar, Trustee, Tata Trusts, and N. Chandrasekaran, Chairman, Tata Sons. Given the rising cancer burden in the region, Tata Trusts has joined hands with TTD to address this concern by bringing affordable cancer care closer home to the people of the region.

Tata Trusts have been working in cancer care for several decades across a spectrum of activities, ranging from the setting up of pioneering institutions such as the Tata Memorial Hospital in 1941 and Tata Medical Center, Kolkata in 2011, to providing medical relief grants to individuals suffering from this dreaded disease.

Recognising the centrality of infrastructure to cancer service delivery and the shortage of the same in the country, the Trusts are in the process of conceiving and setting up or upgrading various super specialty centres across the nation with the objective of decentralizing cancer care in the country. As a member of the National Cancer Grid, a forum of 106 cancer hospitals, Tata Trusts have access to experts across these centres to enable its various cancer initiatives. The Trusts plan to raise funds internally and externally to finance these not-for-profit hospital projects.

The proposed facility in Tirupati will be a comprehensive centre, with in and out-patient facilities, diagnostics, therapeutics, rehabilitation and other such support services. In a phased manner the centre will house Operation theaters, linear accelerators for Radiation Oncology, Brachytherapy and a Bone Marrow Transplant unit. The hospital will be constructed on 25 acres of land provided by the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams.

R Venkataramanan, Managing Trustee, Tata Trusts, said “The Trusts are pleased to bring state-of-the-art cancer care services to the region. We are grateful to TTD for this partnership. Our aim is to ensure the provision of equitable, affordable, high quality cancer care for the masses. We are positive that this centre will be a landmark institution in this part of the country.”

Dr. Sambasiva Rao, Executive officer, Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams, said “We have had a great experience working with the Tata Group through our relationship with TCS in the last year and a half. TTD is happy to welcome an institution like Tata Trusts to work on this pressing issue of rising cancer prevalence in the region. We are certain that this project will go a long way in bridging the gap in affordable cancer care in the region.”

Chandrasekaran, Chairman, Tata Sons, said “We are proud to be working with TTD. We have worked together with them to make the pilgrim experience better through technology. Today is another important milestone where the Tata Group and primarily the Tata Trusts are embarking on another important project – a charitable state-of-the-art cancer hospital, which will help patients in Tirupati and outside.”

Krishna Kumar, Trustee, Tata Trusts, said “This is a momentous occasion for us and the beginning of an important partnership with TTD. The cancer care centre will go a long way to mitigate the sufferings of so many thousands of patients and their families in the years to come and the Trusts are happy to be leading this project in association with TTD.”

Tata Trusts will set up a project management vehicle that will be responsible for all aspects of construction, execution and operationalization of the facility. The Trusts will also rope in a team of experts from Tata Medical Center, Kolkata and Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai to provide technical assistance to the project.

This state-of-the-art cancer care centre in Tirupati will address the increasing numbers of cancer cases in the region to begin with, and will evolve to become a renowned centre of excellence in oncology education and research as well. The centre will strive to provide affordable care to patients without denying care to those with financial constraints.

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