Thursday, March 14, 2013

Medical expertswarn about the ‘silent epidemic’ of kidney diseases in India

Participants at the roundtable on kidney care organized by Imprimis Research & Advocacy stress on a collaborative approach among all stakeholders to tackle the menace of chronic kidney disease (CKD) through creating awareness among the society, providing better access to treatment and educating people about the importance of organ donation

New Delhi, 13 March 2013: Sensing the urgency about tackling the menace of CKD in India, the Research & Advocacy wing of Imprimis, a multi-disciplinary communications consultancy, organized a power-packed roundtable on kidney diseases. The roundtable, held a day before the World Kidney Day 2013, was built around the theme of “Care for Your Kidneys. Participants included kidney specialists from some of Delhi’s top medical institutions, along with representatives from the legal fraternity, insurance sector, NGOs and the Government.

Dr L. Swasticharan, Chief Medical Officer (CMO) with the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare who is in charge of the National Tobacco Control Programme and other NCDs, gave the keynote address at the roundtable that had medical specialists discussing the rising kidney disease burden in India; its causes and symptoms; the role of pharmaceutical companies in medical innovation for CKD; the dilemma of dialysis v/s transplantation; deceased organ donation; and the role of health insurance in the equation.

Said Dr L. Swasticharan: “The incidence of end-stage kidney disease in India is estimated to be 150 to 175 per million population per year (or between 150,000 and 175,000 cases). It needs focused attention in terms of raising awareness amongst the people, preventing CKD from happening and helping patients in managing the disease. CKD is no longer an uncommon disease and once it happens, it is expensive to manage. Though CKD is not something which cannot be treated at all, the cost is enormous. Moreover, it also affects the poor disproportionally and the awareness amongst the general public is low and needs to be addressed. CKD dramatically increases the risk of adverse outcomes in terms of healthcare costs, the quality of life the patient leads and ultimately the disease outcome.”

Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) is emerging as a major healthcare challenge for countries around the world. According to WHO, the diseases of the kidney and urinary tract contribute to over 850,000 deaths worldwide. As the incidence of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) rises in India, the problem of CKD is becoming acute. Worse, only a very small percentage of the patients have access to renal replacement and transplant therapy or can afford the procedure.

Dr Sanjay Gupta, Additional Professor of Nephrology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, said: “Nearly 10% of the Indian population suffers from some form of kidney disease with close to 1.5 lakh people getting added to this number every year. The biggest worry is that most cases are asymptomatic; but, some symptoms such as lethargy, swelling of legs and face, anemia, and decreased appetite may point to presence of kidney disease. Recognition and prevention comprise the most important part of tackling CKD. It is important to control diabetes and hypertension for prevention of kidney diseases. Patients also need to avoid even chemicals such as pain medicines.”

The objective of the conference was to create awareness about all aspects of the CKD which kills hundreds of thousands of people every year in India. Experts gave their insights and shared their experiences about issues such as ensuring good kidney health, prevention, treatment and management of CKD, health insurance, legal tangles and kidney transplants.

Highlighting the role of the healthcare Industry in ensuring access of patients to treatment and promoting awareness among them about various diseases, Mr Alok Khettry, Senior Director – CNS, Emerging Markets & Super Specialty Business, with Sanofi India, said: “The genesis of Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) in a patient is usually silent, and hence, discovered late. Creating awareness about the disease is therefore vital as it could prevent many complications, emotional stress, and expenses that the patient incurs as a consequence of the disease. Sanofi, in its capacity as a healthcare company, is bringing together and collaborating with various stakeholders to improve the overall CKD management through patient awareness and better access to treatment. Through this approach, we can jointly improve survival rates, quality of life, and economic burden.”

Dr Harsha Jauhari, Chairman, Dept of Renal Transplant Surgery, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, said: “The number of transplants required is far more than the donors available. There are less than 300 registered kidney transplant centres, nearly 700 nephrologists and not more than 100 transplant surgeons. The scenario demands an urgent new approach with a lot of investment in research and prevention at genetic level, earliest diagnostic screening and advice and identification of vulnerable groups. CKD prevention should become a National Programme.”

Dr Sanjiv Jasuja, Sr Consultant – Nephrology, Indraprastha Apollo Hospital, said: “Rampant use of painkillers & their free over the counter availability is becoming important cause of Acute Kidney Injury and Chronic Kidney disease in Community. With current availability resources & robust management strategies the patients of Kidney disease can look for near normal & healthy life. ”

Participants at the conference included:
Dr Sanjay Gupta, Additional Prof of Nephrology, AIIMS
Dinesh K. Dhanwal, Director Prof of Medicine and Endocrinologist, Maulana Azad Medical College
Dr Harsha Jauhari, Chairman, Department of Renal Transplantation, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital
Mr Alok Khettry, Senior Director - CNS, Emerging Markets and Super Specialty Business, Sanofi India
Mr Aseem Garg, Founder and CEO, Deep Chand Dialysis Centre (DCDC)
Dr Sunil Kumar Jain, Chief Pharmacist, AIIMS & VP – Indian Pharmaceutical Association, Delhi Branch
Dr Sanjiv Jasuja, Sr Consultant - Nephrology, Indraprastha Apollo Hospital
Mr Sanjay Jain, Senior Advocate, High Court of Delhi - Committee member of the Transplantation of Human Organs and Tissues (Amendment) Bill, 2008
Ms Pallavi Kumar, Executive Director, Mohan Foundation
Dr S. Vijay, Claims Head, Religare Health Insurance Company Limited.

The event was organized in association with Sanofi India.

* * *
About Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD)
CKD, also known as chronic renal disease, is a progressive loss in renal function over a period of months or years. Chronic kidney failure is a progressive irreversible deterioration in renal function in which the body’s ability to maintain metabolic, fluid and electrolyte balance fails, resulting in uremia which render the patient to depend up on hemodialysis for the maintenance of the internal milieu and to avoid uremia. In recent times, awareness about chronic kidney disease and its burden on the society is on the rise.

About Imprimis ( ; Twitter: @imprimispr)
Imprimis, a part of the Perfect Relations Group, has gained a stronghold in the healthcare and pharma space over the last decade, working with a slew of domestic and international pharma majors to fulfill their reputation management needs. In recent years, Imprimis has expanded its portfolio to include clients from the education, IT/Telecom and retail verticals too. The skills and expertise that Imprimis has developed over the years have put it in a unique position to support any sector.

Imprimis Research & Advocacy, a specialist research arm of Imprimis, is involved in developing focused analytical methods to provide business/market intelligence across various industry sectors. It is equipped with phenomenal in-house expertise, a pan-India network and well-entrenched meaningful relationships with key influencers in India, including investors, industry associations, media, NGOs, consumers, policy makers and regulators.

About Sanofi  (
Sanofi, a global, diversified healthcare leader, discovers, develops and distributes therapeutic solutions focused on the patients’ needs. It offers a wide range of essential healthcare assets, including a broad-based product portfolio and a presence worldwide. With presence in over 100 countries, with nearly 110,000 employees, Sanofi has core strengths in the field of healthcare with seven growth platforms: diabetes solutions; human vaccines; innovative drugs; rare diseases; consumer healthcare; emerging markets; and animal health.

Sanofi researches and develop medicines and vaccines to improve the lives of the people globally. In India, Sanofi’s quality products and services are delivered by a niche team of hi-caliber professionals who adhere to the highest ethical and quality standards and work towards providing optimal healthcare solutions to ailing patients. Sanofi has a rich legacy of original research molecules across significant disease segments such as cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, oncology, central nervous system, consumer healthcare as well as in preventive medicines like vaccines. Sanofi stands for promotion of highly research-based and evidence-based medicines.

For further details please contact:
Neha Jindal (
Nyamat Bindra (

Friday, March 8, 2013

Roundtable discussion on Kidney Care – March 13

Healthcare industry experts  come together to talk about issues concerning Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) organized in New Delhi by Imprimis Research & Advocacy and Sanofi India

New Delh, March 8, 2013: Continually, we see a rising number of people suffering from kidney ailments and other lifestyle related diseases. Against this backdrop, it is extremely essential to highlight the significance of kidney care as well as discuss kidney risk and disease prevention techniques. Keeping this objective in mind, on World Kidney Day -- celebrated on 14th March across the globe -- Imprimis Research and Advocacy, a specialist wing of Imprimis PR, jointly with Sanofi India, a diversified healthcare company, is organizing a roundtable discussion on 13th March 2013 with the central theme “Care for your Kidneys – Role of Prevention in Chronic Kidney Disease”. The event will be hosted as a moderated round table discussion by Archana Pandey, Director (External Affairs) Max India Ltd on the said topic.

Drug Today Medical Times is the official media partner for the upcoming event.

The event will bring key stakeholders from diverse sections of the healthcare industry on a common platform to discuss kidney disease burden; causes and symptoms; role of Pharma companies in medical innovation for Chronic Kidney Disease; laws and scenario related to kidney transplant in the country; dilemma of transplant v/s dialysis; making dialysis affordable; new trend of deceased organ donation; and role of health insurance.

The roundtable on kidney care would have a distinguished set of panelists, including: (in order of event flow)
•    Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Additional Prof. of Nephrology, AIIMS
•    Dr.  Dinesh K. Dhanwal. Director Prof. of Medicine and Endocrinologist, Maulana Azad Medical College.
•    Dr. Harsha Jauhari, Chairman, Department of Renal Transplantation, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital
•    Aseem Garg, Founder and CEO, Deep Chand Dialysis Centre (DCDC)
•    Alok Khettry, Senior Director- CNS, Emerging Markets and Super Specialty Business, Sanofi India
•    Dr. Sunil Kumar Jain, Chief Pharmacist, AIIMS & VP- Indian Pharmaceutical Association, Delhi Branch
•    Sanjay Jain, Senior Advocate, High court of Delhi- Committee member of the Transplantation of Human Organs and Tissues (Amendment) Bill, 2008
•    Pallavi Kumar, Executive Director, Mohan Foundation
•    Dr. S. Vijay, Claims Head, Religare Health Insurance Company Limited

This forum discuss upon the measures that can be taken to manage the disease and share insights about the treatments, diagnosis and services etc.

This forum discuss upon the measures that can be taken to manage the disease and share insights about the treatments, diagnosis and services etc.

For Live tweets follow #irtkidney and for more information visit:

Delegate by Invitation only. Please register with:
Neha Jindal (
Nyamat Bindra (

Friday, March 1, 2013

Educational News, Delhi, Imprimis welcomes government's move to set up Institute of Agricultural Bio-technology at Ranchis of socio-economic development

Report by India Education bureau, New Delhi: Imprimis, a leader in the life sciences communications space, has welcomed the announcement in the latest budget about establishing the Indian Institute of Agricultural Bio-technology at Ranchi, Jharkhand. The Institute will serve as a centre of excellence and give a boost to R&D in the Indian biotechnology industry. It will be a welcome change in a region which still remains largely backward socially and economically.

The setting up of the new facility is being taken as a proof of the Government’s commitment to the growth of the Indian biotechnology sector. Agricultural biotechnology is extremely important for India as the country’s current agricultural practices are not economically sustainable. It is considered a sunrise segment for the biotech industry.

Commenting on the 2013-14 budget, Dilip Cherian, Consulting Partner, Perfect Relations Group, said: “Finance Minister P. Chidambaram’s eighth budget has pledged a ‘responsible’ budget and voiced eagerness to restore confidence in India’s public finances and economic management by tightening spending. It has focused on skills development and job creation and covers all sections of society. The several initiatives announced in the technology space are noteworthy.”

Nymphia Vishin, Deputy CEO, Imprimis, said: “As a life-sciences focused organization, we are happy to see the biotech sector getting its due from the government, especially since it has been contributing significantly to the country’s economic and social welfare and expanded nearly 19% in 2011-12. I hope setting up the new institute for agricultural bio-technology is the first one in a series of initiatives to be launched by the Indian government to boost the country’s biotechnology sector that has the potential to become as big as the information technology industry if provided the right enabling environment.”
The Indian biotechnology industry registered a double-digit growth to clock a turnover of over Rs 20,000 crores in 2011-12. It currently faces many challenges such as a lack of funding and entrepreneurial skills as well as weak intellectual property laws. The role of the government is crucial in putting together an ecosystem that gives the right growth opportunities for the Indian biotechnology industry.

Tanya Kewalramani, Chief Science Communications Officer with Imprimis, added: “We are excited by this initiative of the government which validates the crucial role that biotech will play in the agricultural sector, especially in the context of a burgeoning population. It is encouraging to see that the government has taken note of the huge potential biotechnology offers for India and has put in tangible efforts to increase its scope and reach for better outcomes. At this time, it is crucial to increase public awareness of the basic scientific concepts surrounding biotech so that we can all better appreciate innovations happening in the sector.”

In his budget speech, Finance Minister P Chidambaram highlighted the important role incubators play in mentoring new businesses. He said that funds provided to technology incubators located within academic institutions and approved by the government will qualify as CSR (corporate social responsibility) expenditure. The new Companies Bill requires companies to spend two per cent of average net profits towards CSR activities. Imprimis believes this is a positive move that will help entrepreneurs start new biotechnology businesses in the country.