Karnatak Health Institute bloomed steadily on the rocks of Ghataprabha, where the surrounding was the lush green Ghataprabha river basin, but the natives still very ignorant, illiterate, ill-healthy and economically poor! Remotest rural as it was the part of Gokak Taluka, the Streams of development had not been flowing (even though waters of Ghataprabha canal were taken upto Vijapur) through the lands of this nomadic patch! For decades and years, under-development of this neglected Taluka kept its inhabitants in starving, unhygienic, unhealthy & economically poor conditions!
But in 1929, a ‘Prophet’ called Dr. Kokatnur came from Belgaum, to start his ‘Medical Practice’ here! A highly qualified Surgeon from USA, left his lucrative assignment and came back to India! This was the ‘Call of the Heart’ and Dr. G.S. Kokatnur positively responded to his conscience, as he had seen the sufferings of ‘his people’ ever since his childhood!
A clinic was started on the rock of Ghataprabha banks, under the blazing Sun, but that would not bother him, as the (calm) flame of service lighted in his heart was more brighter. Soon Dr. Kokatnur’s magic hand and healing touch, cured the patients coming to him & he won the minds of the people even from far-off areas, who started coming to him with the patient in a bullock-cart! The work extended leaps-and-bounds as he became famous & popular due to his excellence & expertise in medical treatment !
In 1935, the first hospital-building came-up & Dr. Kokatnur got his like-minded friends (Doctors) coming to Ghataprabha, even from the cities like Mumbai! Soon, Dr. N.S. Hardikar, freedom-fighter joined & moulded his services towards socio-economic development of Gokak taluka people. Dr. M.K. Vaidya joined the Institution in 1948 & worked ceaselessly till his death (1948-1993), who with his continuous & untiring efforts, started shaping the Modern KHI (of today)!
After independence, & particularly from 1951 onwards, KHI took positive steps & never looked back ! It obtained 146 acres of land from then Bombay Government, over and above 60-70 acres of its initial project-area. Now, patients adhered to KHI’s Ambulance-services to come to KHI’s hospital. This was the beginning of ‘Service’ with latest surgical and medical treatment, with latest of medicines! And that too, with costs affordable by patients.
But from here, KHI emerged not as Hospital complex alone !
What exactly is KHI ?
KHI is not Hospital Complex alone. It is a voluntary organization, where the meaning of Health goes beyond cure of disease.
It is an educational institution meant for spreading the Gospel of Healthy life – individual, family, community and Nation.
KHI is an abode of peace for the people who seek peace and want to get it peacefully.
It is a demonstration center too, for these things. It is thus a mission. It is a school for human beings, for workers, for patients and for those who are running it – and some day, perhaps, for the Nation.
It is backed by number of voluntary workers from the Governing Council down to the Mahila Mandals in villages who look after the Rural Complex.
KHI is built as a Good Healthy United Family (HUF) when united families of this Nation are being destroyed by a wave of neo-mania and pressure of circumstances. KHI is an Experiment to find out the best possible way for the uplift if Indian Community, blending the best in the old and the new.
Self-help, self-respect, self confidence, hard work, independence selflessness and self-sacrifice too are its principles in action all along its life. Several of its services are free to many. Remaining services are highly economical to all. Personalization is achieved through feeling of high respect to the best creation of the Great Creator….. The Human Being. It is thus Temple of all Religions.
Therefore, one finds in KHI, a spontaneous blend of Health-education of the masses, Medical services & socio-economic development of the poorest of the rural poor !
The KHI’s tri-colour :
Health - Education through service, village-level training in cleanliness & hygiene of primary Village-Health-Workers.
Medical - Surgical, medicinal treatment at affordable low cost or even at times at No cost to needy patient !
Economic - Uplift of rural poor, through Mahila-Mandal Udyogkendra’s activities in KHI and in surrounding 6 villages.
Along with raising economic standards, KHI is an Institute, where its
physical structure, infrastructure, water-supply and drainage, waste-disposal, even play grounds and gardens are designed in such a way that it’s well spaced, with healthy, dust-free & dirt-free environment, & economical, to provide a model for peace. Serenity, neatness-cleanliness, happiness, salubrious air, which would avoid evil sentiments & quarrels amongst people, self-sacrifice, so that every one leads a quality life!
In this temple of all religions, (where ‘Service’ is the only ‘Religion’) the sacred shrines are :
- Hospital-complex, TB-sanatorium, Village-health-centers.
- Nursing-training-school, Primary-education, Vocational-training-center i.e., Udyogkendra.
- Innovations & Technology development : bringing latest in Medicare & Treatment : (Multi-Specialty-Hospital) to Modernisation of Medical stores & office/accounting procedures. (computerization of Medical stores & ‘Accounting & Management Information System’)
And with the MISSIONARY zeal it marches ahead!