An 82-year-old doctor, Yogi Aeron has been awarded Padma Shri Award by the Government of India on January 26 for treating patients with burnt faces, free of cost for at least 27 years. This year, the government recognised Aeron's efforts and contribution to the healthcare community by awarding the 4th highest civilian award in the nation along with 117 others. According to media reports, after the doctor received the information about this honour, he said he hopes that some help was reached to thousands of patients who are currently in his waiting list.
Yogi Aeron started the ‘Helping Hand’ initiative in Dehradun which is dedicated to providing medical help to hill people. He treats over 500 patients free of cost every year & he will be recognized with Padma Shri for his contribution. #PeoplesPadma #PadmaAwards2020 #PadmaAwards pic.twitter.com/rMDzOvDea4— MyGovIndia (@mygovindia) January 25, 2020
Aeron started 'Helping Hand' in Dehradun and provides medical facilities in the hilly areas since he returned from the United States in 1983. After leaving his lucrative practices in the foreign country, the 82-year-old now reportedly treats nearly 500 patients every year without charging them anything. He was born in Muzaffarnagar district of Uttar Pradesh in 1937 and received his specialisation in plastic surgery in the US after completing graduation from King George Medical College in Lucknow.
Aeron purchased a land in Malsi, nearly 10 kilometres from Mussorie road in Dehradun, Uttarakhand in 1983. Currently, the doctor acquires a four-acre campus and has turned it into a 'science park'. The doctor now plans to convert the area into a learning space for children while proving medical help to the underprivileged. Furthermore, since he has a waiting list of 10,000 patients, Aeron reportedly starts his day by planning his appointments with his assistant.
Since Aeron provides treatment free of cost, he has been reportedly accorded with the status of God. However, this is also the reason the 82-year-old medical professional constantly looks out for funding through his friends, NGO's as well as the government. Several media reports also state that Aeron's son, Kush has said that his father 'has never been able to manage finances for his own', however, he still continues to treat patients because it 'makes him happy'.
(with inputs from agencies)