Odisha Government’s Financial Assistance for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy Patients

Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) is a rare genetic disorder that affects approximately 1 in 3,500 boys worldwide. It is a progressive and incurable disease that leads to muscle weakness, loss of mobility, and ultimately, premature death. In India, the state of Odisha has taken a step towards helping DMD patients and their families by announcing financial assistance of Rs 10 lakh for each patient for genetic tests and treatment at super-speciality hospitals.

Purpose of Financial Assistance

The announcement of financial assistance by the Odisha government aims to provide support for the treatment of DMD patients. The funds can be utilized by the patients for genetic tests and treatment at super-speciality hospitals. Additionally, the DMD patients can use the financial assistance to meet the requirements towards an electric wheelchair and appropriate physiotherapy.

Disbursement of Financial Assistance

The financial assistance will be disbursed through the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund (CMRF). The family of the patient will represent for financial assistance before the collector of the concerned district, who will send the representation for necessary verification by the Chief District Medical Officer (CDMO) concerned. Once the recommendation certificate is received and authenticated by the Chief District Medical Officer (CDMO), the relevant district collector will transfer Rs 10 lakh from the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund (CMRF) directly to the bank account of the parent or guardian of the DMD patient.

Verification and Submission of List

The CDMOs will verify the recommendation certificate for financial assistance and submit the list of recommended patients to the government. The collectors will also submit a necessary requisition to the General Administration department for allotment of funds for the purpose.

Demand by Odisha Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy Association

The Odisha Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy Association (ODMDA) organized a protest to request Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s involvement in providing appropriate treatment resources for children and adolescents in the state affected by DMD. They had requested a monthly financial aid of Rs 15,000 for each family, free genetic tests for children showing symptoms, and an insurance program for children with DMD.

Orissa High Court’s Directive

During its latest hearing in November, the Orissa High Court instructed AIIMS-Bhubaneswar to aid in the treatment of 16 children afflicted with DMD. The High Court had also directed the Odisha government and Centre to provide details on possible solutions to address the needs of children suffering from DMD.



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