When Sajeev Thomas, 39, recalls his childhood in Wayanad, Kerala, as we know he still feels the roots that inspired his mission for life. “My father was a government employee.My mother was a housewife.In my precollegial years, I had to travel 60 km by bus to school.I was inspired by my father to serve my country when I was big,” he said In a telephone call Jakarta, Indonesia, where he now lives with his wife and children Liji Thomas, Anna and Sera.
After obtaining a master’s degree in radiation physics and a Ph.D. in stereotactic radiation from the University of Calcutta, he denied many corporate hospitals offers and joined the National Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health (NIMHANS) Bangalore place.
A new life
Sajeev was NIMHANS for seven years, from 2005 to 2011. There he worked hard to improve the radiosurgery department and set up the Gama knife unit, the first in South India. Change, however, was difficult and often ungrateful.
In 2011, he suffered a near-fatal auto accident. “After that, it was like a new life,” he recalls. After recovery, he returned to NIMHANS for six months before being invited to establish the first Gama knife radiosurgery program in Indonesia.
Since then, medicine has kept its fervent appeal.
Stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) is a non-inflammatory treatment technique that uses targeted radiation precisely to treat tumors in the brain. While SRS requires fewer sessions than traditional therapy, the Gamma Knife machines use a more intensive treatment in one to five sessions to treat cancer and non-cancerous tissue in the brain.
Sajeev has established the radiosurgery program at the Siloé international hospital group in Indonesia and later, often traveled in South Asia to train neurosurgeons, medical physicists, oncologists and others in their new technology. He is passionate about raising awareness and knowledge of specialized medical care.
In addition, he received specialized training at the University Hospital of Karolonska in Sweden, the University of Wisconsin in the United States, the International Center for Theoretical Physics in Italy, BARC in Mumbai and other institutes. He is a member of the International Stereotactic Radiosurgery Society, ESTRO.
He is currently involved in cancer treatment and care facilities in Indonesia, including body radiation and volumetric arc radiation therapy for the Siloé group. In a developing country of 250 million people, Sajeev estimates that cancer is a largely neglected area and requires urgent attention.
He is serious about the difficulties they have for Indonesia to receive medical treatment. Challenges vary by context. Finance is weak and there is a shortage of work. Cultural differences should be taken into account while providing health services in different parts of the country.
Miles to Go
“What is your secret to making your dreams come true?” I want to explode. Thinking I would be too rushed, I reconsider. “What does it hold?” Application does. “Dedication and perseverance,” he laughs. “There are no short cuts.”
Sajeev dream of creating a research institute of medical devices and technologies for Asian countries. In an era of growing health hazards, medical care often comes at exorbitant rates, especially if medicines or equipment should be purchased from Western manufacturers. Its desire is to open the doors of a research institute for medical devices of high quality that can be provided to the countries with less financial privileges.
It is perhaps his childhood dream of serving his country, which continues to play a role in the future medical plan of success. However, whether in India or elsewhere, his work in medicine can not be considered anything less qu’intégratif and remarkable.