Meteoric Rise Of A Dexterous Doctor
He came to the capital with big dreams in his eyes, like any other person. And he realised his dreams with exceptional skills. This man has now reached the top post of Chairman of the prestigious Sir Ganga Ram Hospital (SGRH), and he is Dr BK Rao (Brijendra Kumar Rao). He joined SGRH as a Junior Consultant (Anaesthesiology) and rose to the rank of many other senior posts and then the Chairman (since May 2006) in Board of Management. In recognition of his outstanding contribution to the field of medicine, he is conferred with many awards and recently he was awarded Padma Bhushan.
From the beginning Dr Rao was very instrumental in bringing up the speciality of Critical Care Medicine in the hospital. “I had a smooth life and when in 1983 I joined SGRH, the challenges came and so did the opportunities”, affirms Dr Rao. Started from level A he reached the zenith of success by dedicating himself to work and making life meaningful because life is no fun. While he dedicated himself to work shouldering the responsibility of the hospital, he doesn’t get time for his family. “A day has only 24 hours which has to be divided into you, family and work. Invariably, work gets the priority. But for this I have a very understanding spouse and children, who understand me and appreciates me for what I am doing, but this does not stop them from saying that I don’t give time to them,” says the father of two children Dr Rao. In his life he is influenced by many people like Swami Vivekanand, Atal Behari Vajpayee and his teachers, who laid the foundation.
In nothing do men more nearly approach the gods than in giving health to men. And this is what Dr Rao has been doing. “In my whole career I have been through many cases but some have always been on top of the list. There was a case of a man, who was in a critical condition and somehow he lost his voice, he used to write on the paper to convey his thoughts and one such day he conveyed his desire to speak. He said, ‘Whatever time I am left with I want to speak.’ But in medical science there was no such way to make him speak but we did the whole lot of research and used our engineering mind and made him speak. The first line he spoke was: ‘Take this pen, I don’t need it anymore.’ When a patient comes to us, needless to say, he needs the assurance that the doctor and the hospital should provide the flawless medical service and cure him and everything else becomes secondary for him,” he narrated.
While talking about the tertiary healthcare, Dr Rao suggested: “The government should concentrate more on primary healthcare than on tertiary healthcare. People should be provided with the basic needs, which they don’t get at present. But it is not because of the fact that the government doesn’t spend money. The government spends a lot of money, even more than what we spend. Even then, why we serve better? The root causes are accountability and responsibility in government hospitals. Our management is very sensitive about patients’ needs and care, whereas the attitude in government hospital is chalta hai. And that attitude is not correct. If we want to grow in terms of healthcare, there is lot to be done.”
Informing about the glorious track record of the hospital, a proud Dr Rao said: “SGRH is a very unique hospital in many ways. Nobody can replace our place. It is because we are different, although we do the same things that others do, but in a different way. For us, patients’ care is our top priority. And even after ten years, SGRH will be the leading hospitals. We are now planning to expand five-and-a-half lakh square feet of area, in which we will open super speciality base centers; we are about to open clean-rooms, in which we will grow stem cells, till now we buy them but now we will grow them, which will definitely cost lesser to the patient than what it costs him now.”
By Vaishali Tanwar