Friday, October 22, 2021

Health Live @ Seniors Today with Dr Eric Borges

On Saturday, April 24, 2021, Seniors Today hosted its weekly Health Live with Dr Eric Borges,  leading cardiologist and Honorary Chairman at the King George V Memorial Trust, Mumbai. Dr Borges made a detailed presentation on the Sukoon Nilaya Palliative Care Centre that the Trust has set up recently which offers palliative care services addressing the needs of non-cancer patients. Dr Noor Gill captures the takeaways from the session.




Dr Borges is Professor in Cardiology and Senior Cardiologist at the Bombay Hospital Institute of Medical Sciences. He is also Honorary Chairman of the King George V Memorial Trust, Mumbai.

An alumnus of the T N Medical College, Dr Borges is a recipient of 13 prizes and gold medals in his career. He is also associated as a cardiologist in Mauritius and Tanzania at hospitals which have collaboration with the Bombay Hospital.

He has performed more than 30,000 angiograms including coronary and paediatric cases and performed over 7,000 cases of coronary angioplasty with and without stent implantations.

King George V Memorial – Anand Niketan ( is a charitable organisation established in 1938 under a trust formed by the Governor of the erstwhile Bombay State with the  primary objective of providing care and shelter to the infirm and aged destitute. It runs a 90-bed infirmary for destitute and abandoned patients. KGVM, with the support of the Cipla Foundation, has commenced palliative care services to address the needs of non-cancer patients.

Some takeaways from the session:

  • Borges took attendees on a virtual tour of the Sukoon Nilaya Paliative Centre which is situated right in the centre of Mumbai in the Worli- Mahalaxmi area on a vast seven-acre land.
  • The palliative care centre has been crafted to deal with non-cancer palliative care patients. It is the only centre that deals with non-cancer patients in Greater Mumbai and the Mumbai metropolitan region.
  • When palliative care started, many years ago, it constituted a therapeutic arm to treat those people suffering from cancer and other disease that were beyond control or cure. These people were in a lot of pain, discomfort and despair and they needed comfort and pain relief and that is when they were referred to a separate branch of medicine that was called palliative care.
  • 95-95% of the palliative care deals only with cancer in the current times. There are a huge number of non-cancer patients who need palliative care but fail to receive.
  • A list of some non-cancer conditions that require palliative care include-
    • Neurological diseases- strokes, disabilities secondary to stroke, dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, spinal cord injuries, paraplegia, quadriplegia,
    • Muscular disease- muscular dystrophies
    • Renal diseases
    • Lung disease- lung fibrosis
    • Liver diseases
    • Orthopaedic diseases
    • Rheumatological conditions
  • There is no mention of cardiac conditions in the list above because cardiac care keeps on evolving o rapidly so much so that something that was thought to be untreatable and not curable is no longer the case.
  • Palliative care goes one step further than the oral medications and medical advices. Palliative care takes care of both the body and the mind- you have physical, psychological, emotional support. And the care also spills over to the primary caregiver.
  • Statistically speaking 80% of the senior citizens will need palliative care.
  • The words infirmary and palliative care centre are not the same, in the sense that the word “infirmary” was used by the British and we no longer have the word in common usage. It is an old terminology.
  • All the patient who are admitted under the care of a palliative care centre have ongoing, life limiting, serious diseases and they need special care to help them walk through their illness.
  • There are no specific criteria for admission into a palliative care centre. Their primary care giver- that can be their relative or their physician and they can decide that they want their opinion as to whether they will be able to help or the physician himself can refer the patient to us in case he feels the need. Even during palliative care, Dr. Borges says that they would like to keep their physician in the loop of things because they are the primary treating doctors whereas they will be giving supportive an supplemental treatment over and above what they suggest.


Sukoon Nilaya Palliative Care Centre can be reached at:
Email: Telephones: 9136508545, 9136688545


Dr Noor Gill
Dr Noor Gill, MBBS, deciphers the space between heartbeats, figuratively and literally. Powered by frequent long naps and caffeine, she believes that “knowledge without giving back to society is meaningless” and works to make caring cool again.

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