Prakash Tyagi has an MD in Medicine and has further studied Geriatric Medicine, International Public Health, Public Policy and Non-Profit Management.
Dr. Tyagi has been working with GRAVIS since 1999. Currently, he is the Executive Director of the organization. He leads the organization through planning and management of its various programs and projects. GRAVIS is one of the leading NGOs in North-West India, and focuses on livelihood promotion, health and education. Dr. Tyagi has also contributed to a number of development and health projects locally and internationally as well as to research studies focusing on community and public health.
In 2000, he founded a major, rural hospital in Western Rajasthan and currently directs its administration. This 70-bed rural facility is an important medical center in the area.
Promoting respect for the sexual expressions and gender identities of Older Adults in Costa Rica, El Salvador and Panamá.
Home to over 100 million older people, India has the second largest elderly population in the world. Older people in many parts of India, especially in the rural settings live in vulnerable conditions with limited facilities and with an overall poor health status. In rural parts of the country, there are also aspects related to poverty and malnutrition adversely impacting older people’s health. The prevalence rates of both communicable and no-communicable diseases (NCDs) are quite high, and in the recent times, there has been a steady growth in NCDs mainly hypertension, diabetes, arthritis, mental health issues and ocular disorders.
GRAVIS, a Help Age affiliate, has been working actively in the Thar Desert region of India to address older people’s health. It has a multi-layered health intervention combining medical services, public health activities and research component. Self care trainings is an integral part of our work with older people. With the help of locally designed contents, GRAVIS team trains older people on healthy ageing. The curriculum includes 5 modules focusing on basics of human body and biology of ageing, Common diseases in old age, prevention of common diseases, management of common diseases and useful information on Government health programmes. Older people in groups 12 to 15 attend the trainings. To provide service to older people and to take self care education further, GRAVIS also works with a cadre of Village based Health Workers (VHWs). The cadre if trained by GRAVIS and is given basic supplies and technical support. There is also a special focus on mental health support through counselling.
The impact of our self care training interventions has been quite positive. The trainings are well received within the community. Over 1,500 older people have been trained who report a significant increase in their knowledge levels. GRAVIS has been able to draw the attention of local health authorities and hopes that the trainings could be scaled up further. The VHWs cadre is well respected and acting as an important referral link and as a good knowledge source. It is evident that the overall health seeking behaviour among older people has improved.
Self care and improved health knowledge are critically important for older people to stay healthy, particularly in remote and resource scarce settings. Moving forward, GRAVIS envisions to measure the impact of its interventions in a technical way. We also aim to expand our interventions to other communities nationally and elsewhere.