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First Minister sees GCU sign agreement to help prevent amputations in India

12 October 2010

First Minister Alex Salmond

First Minister Alex Salmond

Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU) has been granted £20,000 from the Scottish Governments South Asia Development Award to deliver a programme in the management of diabetic foot disease in India that could prevent diabetes related limb amputations.

The training programme will be delivered by specialists from the universitys School of Health to physicians providing diabetic care in Chennai, Mumbai and Delhi and starts this month.

Diabetic foot disease accounts for more than 50% of non traumatic limb amputations.  Early detection of the disease may prevent amputation and the programme will provide clinicians with the necessary skills to identify diabetic foot disease at an early stage. The World Health Organisation (WHO) now classes diabetes in India as a pandemic, affecting approximately 50 million people.

GCU Principal and Vice-Chancellor, Professor Pamela Gillies, is in India today (October 12) to sign an agreement with Dr. Sneh Bhargava, Medical Director of the Sitaram Bhartia Institute of Science and Research in New Delhi for delivery of the project, witnessed by Scotlands First Minister, Alex Salmond, and Kapil Sabal, who is Indias Minister for Human Resource Development.

Similar partnerships have been forged with the MV Hospital for Diabetes and Diabetes Research in Chennai, Lilavati Hospital and Research Centre in Mumbai and Max Health Care, also in Delhi, to deliver the programme in other parts of the country.

The First Minister said, I am delighted to join the Minister of Human Resource Development to welcome this important new partnership between Glasgow Caledonian University and Sitaram Bhartia, one of four partners involved in the programme. The Scottish Government is proud to support this project to share Scottish expertise to make a real difference to the quality of the lives of thousands of people in India.

Glasgow Caledonian University Principal and Vice-Chancellor, Pamela Gillies, said, Our partners in India are very important to us and we are very privileged indeed to be working with our esteemed Indian colleagues on this groundbreaking initiative to help prevent unnecessary suffering through diabetes related limb amputations. The support of the Scottish Government and Scottish Development International will allow us to share our podiatric expertise with doctors around India, building capacity in a sustainable way that will transform lives.