In a fine gesture, the city doctors pledged to offer free medical care to over 400 mentally-challenged children here on Friday.

A total of 1,400 doctors, the members of Indian Medical Association, Warangal chapter, took the pledge and said they would collaborate with NGOs and provide free medicines to patients.

Distributing health cards to mentally-challenged children, IMA district president Madisetty Sudeep said free medical care to mentally-challenged was a first-of-its-kind initiative by doctors in the State. Earlier, only free health camps had been organised by doctors at special homes and educational institutions. “The health cards distributed to children will enable them approach any hospital or clinic in the district in time of medical care. There are about 250 hospitals and nursing homes in the district. All have agreed to honour these health cards and give special care to children,” he said.

IMA members P. Vijaychander Reddy and N. Surender Reddy said the initiative would help children who cannot afford medical services. They hoped that the doctors in other cities would follow suit in setting a new precedent. “The IMA has conducted scores of medical camps even in remote villages and this year, we organised more camps than ever. We even mobilised funds for free medicines,” Mr. Vijaychander Reddy said.

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