Dr. Balwant Singh Hospital now has holistic Cardiac Care Unit
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Dr. Prashant Vaijyanath (centre) and other members of the visiting cardiac medical team (Dr. Balwant Singh Hospital photo)
Dr. Prashant Vaijyanath (centre) and other members of the visiting cardiac medical team (Dr. Balwant Singh Hospital photo)

-six major surgeries done by visiting team

COMING on the heels of six successful life-saving cardiac surgeries that were performed during a five-day period, Dr. Balwant Singh Hospital, on Wednesday, announced that it now has a holistic cardiac care unit that is capable of performing complex cardiac surgeries.
According to a press release from the medical facility, the surgeries were performed by a specialised visiting team from India. The team will be returning to Guyana to perform surgeries when needed. The team includes Dr. Prashant Vaijaynath, Cardiac Surgeon; Dr. Vijay Patil, Cardiologist; Dr. Ramesh Vardharajan, Anaesthesiologist; Mr. Vishwanath Belavi, Perfusionist and, Mrs. Elvina Mariadoss, Physician Assistant.
The health institution said of the six major surgeries performed, four were off-pump beating heart bypass surgery, with most of the patients having moderate to severe LV dysfunction characteristics of long-standing neglected heart disease, due to lack of access to specialised services.
There was also a successful mitral valve replacement in one young girl with critical mitral stenosis and severe pulmonary hypertension; and a complex congenital with common atrium and severe tricuspid regurgitation in a very sick patient. None of the patients had any adverse reactions and are all doing very well and recuperating as expected.

Dr Prashanth also performed one pediatric cardiac surgery in this session and is trained to perform cardiac surgery on newborn babies as well. He hopes to be able to help children who are waiting for cardiac surgery at the Caribbean Heart Institute and the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC).
The patients all had a prior myocardial infarction. The surgery, known as a beating heart procedure, was expeditious, with zero complications, and one unit or no blood usage. All were fast-tracked to extubating within one hour of surgery.
Dr. Madhu Pandey Singh, Chief Executive Officer of the Balwant Singh Hospital said, “It has been the desire of Balwant Singh Hospital to fill this particular healthcare need in Guyana. With the help of this team, we were able to fill this gap and give access to safe and advanced cardiac surgery.”
Dr. Singh added: “We at Balwant Singh Hospital are extremely pleased with this success and the fact that we were able to help very sick patients who have been awaiting surgery for more than a year.

“I am very pleased with the support received from the Balwant Singh Hospital and their staff. They made this possible and it is my hope that in the future we will be able to have regular procedures like these to help Guyanese patients who are in dire need of life-saving surgeries,” Cardiac Surgeon, and leader of the cardiac surgery team, Dr. Prashant Vaijaynath, said.
Dr. Vaijaynath added: “We have found that the Dr. Balwant Singh Hospital is one of the state-of-the-art facilities fully equipped to execute from neonatal cardiac surgery to heart transplantation in Guyana. While the laws for such procedures are currently not available, I think they will be in the future.”
The next round of surgeries will be performed by the team in the next six to eight weeks and a total of five patients have already registered. It is the hope of the Dr. Balwant Singh Hospital, that more public and private partnerships of a similar nature will see patients being able to access these life-saving surgeries without having to travel abroad.

The hospital took an organised approach, understanding the need for these types of procedures to be performed in Guyana, and was able to allocate additional assets to the institution’s facilities. Over the years, many patients had no choice but to live with their cardiovascular disease or travel abroad, where these surgeries are very expensive and burdensome to them and their families.
While the institution announced its success, it said multiple challenges were mounted but with robust teamwork and admin support from hospital personnel, it was able to achieve its set mandate with expert diagnosis to treatment achievement and with trained local manpower.
Compliance with surgical protocols and standard operation procedures were attained, asepsis was adhered to, reliable medical records were established, high-quality equipment was acquired, maintenance personnel trained, and disposables, consumables, heart valves, beating heart paraphernalia were made available.

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