Bengaluru gears up to become India’s first Arogya City

Rotary (District 3190), Arogya World, and BPAC join hands to mobilize the city’s key stakeholders through 20 broad pledges initially. Multiple Bengaluru stakeholders pledge their support to the movement

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Bengaluru: In a one of its kind bid to stymie the growth of Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in the city, Rotary (District 3190), Arogya World, and Bangalore Political Action Committee (BPAC) have announced their partnership to mobilize stakeholders and kickstart the Arogya City movement with a Summit on November 28 at St John’s Auditorium.
The movement calls upon the city’s government entities, academia, corporates, entrepreneurs, civil society organizations, to pledge their support towards making Bengaluru India’s first Arogya City.
Determined to contribute to ‘India at 75’ and improve the health of Bengaluru, the three organizations aim to secure close to 20 pledges which will be aptly called the Champions20 (C20) Group that will help at least 500,000 Bengalureans tangibly improve their health.
An Advisory Committee chaired by K Jairaj, IAS (Retd.) has been formed as has a Technical Committee, to guide each pledge maker and follow their progress post the summit. In order to ensure that the objectives of the pledges are met, and projects completed within 2 years, all pledges will be made public at the Arogya Summit.
Speaking about the importance of the movement and why Bengaluru needs to get healthy, Dr. Nalini Saligram, Founder and CEO, Arogya World said, “NCDs (Noncommunicable Diseases) like diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and chronic lung diseases, and mental health, are among the top health & development challenges of the Century, especially in metros like Bengaluru. As part of our endeavor to transform Bengaluru into India’s first Arogya City, we are engaging with diverse stakeholders to make bold pledges, implement well-designed programs, and measurably improve the health of the citizens of Bengaluru. We do not expect to see sweeping improvements right away in city-wide health metrics but are confident our collective impact over time will be significant.”
Dr. Devi Shetty is the Brand Ambassador of Argoya City.
Sharing his thoughts on the Arogya City campaign, Dr. Devi Shetty, cardiac surgeon, and chairman and founder of Narayana Health said, “According to the World Health Organization, India accounts for at least one-fifth of the 17.9 million cardiovascular disease-related deaths globally. NCDs are a growing concern in India and steps must be taken to ensure things do not get out of control. The Arogya City effort is a step in the right direction and will help address Bengaluru’s health in a significant way.”
According to a World Economic Forum whitepaper from 2021 (add link), 43% of Bengalureans suffer from obesity, while a staggering 65% of the population does not indulge in meaningful physical activity. This is also corroborated by a Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) survey- Bengaluru is turning out to be the diabetes capital of the state, if not the country. According to the survey, 51% of people in the city were diabetic. Not only do NCDs have an impact on the health of the city, but they can also have a devastating impact on personal financial security and economic growth. Research points out that it can cause a global cumulative economic output loss, of a staggering $47 trillion by 2030.
The movement’s crux is NCDs prevention and control, mental well-being, and leveraging technology for a healthier tomorrow.