The growth in institutions offering medical services at Udaipur have taken the healthcare domain of the region to an altogether new orbit. One such name, which stands out from the new and old healthcare setups in Udaipur is that of Alakh Nayan Mandir, which carries with it a four decade history of eyecare and philanthropy. The journey from a clinic that started with one doctor to a multi-speciality eye hospital with a staff of over hundred is a result of twenty-five years of selfless service and dedication.
Under the People of Udaipur series from UdaipurTimes, we had the privilege of interacting with Dr. Laxman Singh Jhala of Alakh Nayan Mandir, Udaipur. Dr. Jhala has taken forward Dr. H.S. Chundawat’s dream and vision of bringing light to the lives of underprivileged people through Alakh Nayan Mandir. The institute, which started with just one doctor, Dr. H.S. Chundawat himself and a few support staff, now boasts of a complete organisation in itself. Alakh Nayan Mandir now has a team of nearly two hundred personnel reaching out to approximately one lakh people each year. Dr. Laxman narrates the story of Alakh Nayan Mandir, which we are happy to share with our readers.
Dr. Laxman belongs to a very simple family from Jhadol Village of Udaipur district and his humble upbringing has shaped his personality to a great extent. Dr. Laxman Singh Jhala did his schooling from St Paul’s School, Udaipur and graduated in Medicine from RNT Medical College, Udaipur. Thereafter he received his post graduate degree in Medicine with a specialization in Ophthalmology from Jaipur.
After his marriage to Dr Laxmi in 1997, he came under the divine influence of Her Holiness Mahatma Bhuri Bai, which further developed him into an empathetic human being.
Alakh Nayan Mandir derives its inspiration of service to humanity from Her Holiness Mahatma Bhuri Bai “Alakh’, a lady saint from Nathdwara who practiced the visualization of ‘One God in All’, an extremely powerful message through which she has inspired scores of people. According to her, every human being or rather every creature on this planet is a physical representation of all-pervading God or Supreme Power. Hence, service to humanity is service to God. Dr. Chundawat was greatly influenced by her teachings.
Broad statistical figures are as follows:
Alakh Nayan Mandir provides eye care services in three broad categories:
Quality Eye Care
Alakh Nayan Mandir offers its patient an array of high-end, state-of-the-art eye care services in the following super-specialties.
Community Eye Care Programs
The community outreach program of Alakh Nayan Mandir is managed by Dr. Meenakshi Chundawat, daughter of Dr. H.S. Chundawat and younger sister of Dr. Laxmi Jhala. Dr.Meenakshi completed her studies from the L V Prasad Eye Institute in Community Eye Health and joined Alakh Nayan Mandir. She has been with the institution since 15 years now and looks after the vision centres, camps and community work. Under the guidance of Dr. Meenakshi, Alakh' community eye care program comprises of the following three modules of work:
Eye Care Services for underprivileged
Vision Centres in 12 Villages –Primary Eye Care Services in the villages
School Eye Care Programme
Besides all of the above, Alakh Nayan Mandir has programs for premature babies who are born with eye disease called Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP), which leads to blindness if not treated on time.
They also have a program on Diabetic Retinopathy, which is an eye condition caused by diabetes. The Program is named as Community Based Diabetic Retinopathy Project. The program encompasses population surveys and studies, creating awareness about the disease, organizing screening camps, identifying prospective patients, and finally offering them the required treatment.
“Compassion and empathy towards fellow beings forms the foundation of this eye institute. Dr. H. S. Chundawat, the Founder–Trustee of Alakh Nayan Mandir, who despite having a blooming private practice as an ophthalmologist, transformed his entire business into a public charitable trust, so that he could reach out to greater number of underprivileged patients and serve them with a selfless heart." - Dr. Laxman Singh Jhala
Dr. Laxman informed that Alakh Nayan Mandir is empanelled with Chiranjeevi, Rajasthan Government Health Scheme, Ex Servicemen Contributory Health Scheme, and many other private insurance schemes. It is also a recognized hospital by the National Program for Control of Blindness (NPCB) under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India. It is actively working with NPCB on blindness prevention activities in South Rajasthan, by providing free eye care to the needy and also by imparting high quality education services to in-practice government ophthalmologists.
Besides, there are various ongoing training programs for Community Health Workers, ASHA workers, Anganwadi workers and for in-house nursing and support staff
Till date 92 Ophthalmologists in various categories have been trained at Alakh Nayan Mandir coming from various parts of the country and 4 of them were foreign nationals.
More than 500 candidates from allied health workforce have been trained under various initiatives.