A ray of hope for girls suffering from congenital heart defects

A life-saving, life changing, collaboration through a grant of INR 40 lakhs to support the surgeries of the 20+ girls with Congenital Heart Defects


New Delhi: In a move towards promoting Congenital Heart Defects (CHD) free India and Saving the Girl Child, Pernod Ricard India Charitable Foundation (PRICF) and Genesis Foundation have joined hands to support the surgery of girls suffering from Congenital Heart Defects (CHD). Under this collaboration, PRICF would be supporting surgeries of 20+ girls with a grant of INR 40 Lakhs.

According to a report released by UNICEF in 2018 “More baby girls than boys die in India, as parents neglect healthcare”. The report also stated that “a preference for sons encourages sex-selective abortions, which has led to skewed sex ratios”. The sex ratio in the country today stands at a staggering 940 females per 1000 males. According to the data collected by UNICEF in 2017, nearly 60 percent of the infants admitted to across 700 state run hospital facilities were boys. This is because parents are less likely to seek medical treatment for their daughter than their son.

CHD is the most common congenital anomaly in newborn babies. With over 2 lakh children born with CHD in the country, it contributes to 10% of child mortality. Due to lack of an efficient tracking system, several kids go undetected and without treatment 60% of CHD are lethal within first two years of life.

Given the situation at hand, PRICF and Genesis Foundation have taken up the onus of identifying and supporting the surgeries of girls with CHD, new born to 18 years of age, who belong to families with monthly income of less than Rs 10,000. The aim is to support this neglected section and give them a chance to live.

Speaking about the partnership, Sunil Duggal, Vice President Corporate Affairs, Pernod Ricard India, said, “Over the years, PRICF has provided access to healthcare to the lesser privileged, and we are committed to the same. We are proud of our partnership with Genesis Foundation to provide healthcare treatment to Girls with CHD, who are doubly displaced from the society. They not only have the disadvantage of a heart ailments, but are also overlooked because of their gender. Under the new association, we are trying to tackle two challenges by supporting surgeries of children in the country in partnership with Genesis Foundation. We are extremely happy with this collaboration and hope to Save many more little hearts.”

Sharing their views on the collaboration, Prema and Jyoti Sagar, Founder Trustees, Genesis Foundation, said, “Girls have the advantage of being biologically stronger, yet they are denied timely medical treatment. There is also significant gender bias that exists in the acceptance of heart surgery among children. It is high time that we push away the gender discrimination and nurture the child to overcome obstacles in life and grow up to be a successful individual. At Genesis Foundation we believe life is precious, and no child should die due to lack of funds or medical treatment. We envision an India devoid of deaths caused due to CHD because of lack of awareness, diagnosis or resources. Pernod has been a constant support for GF and we are delighted to embark on this new journey with them to Save Little Hearts.”