AGM – Brisbane – August 2017

AGM of the Australian Board of the Vellore Christian Medical College & Hospital was held on Saturday 19th August 2017 at Nazareth Lutheran Church, 12 Hawthorne Street, Woolloongabba, QLD. Hugh Skeil, from the Development office at CMC Vellore was the invited guest for the meeting.
Bella George, The President of the Board welcomed the guest and the members of the Board. There were 13 attendees and 7 apologies.
Devotions were led by Rev Eric Lawson who based his message on John 20:24-25
Hugh Skeil thanked the Board and the state FOVs for all their work and the donations raised in Australia. He also thanked everyone for the wonderful hospitality shown to him and Debbie during their travel around the country.
He mentioned about the appointment of the New Director Dr J.V. Peter, who will start his term on September 23, 2017. Dr Peter has served as the Associate Director for Finance since 2015 and is the Professor & Head of the Medical ICU Unit at CMC.
Dr J.V. Peter in his conversation with Hugh just before he left for Australia wanted him to convey the following message to the Board. He believes ?Charity is the soul of the work at CMC? and wants the hospital to provide a ?compassionate, Christ centred, holistic, cost effective, quality health care?.
During his term, he wishes to see
a) Further diversification in specialised areas as well as be more efficient.
b) Increase Research Projects by 2 ½ times
c) Increase in the Distance Education Programme.
Hugh talked about the 2 new campuses
– Chittor: Hugh presented a DVD showing the facility and the work done at present. Chittor has provisions for medical and surgical services, but unable to provide obstetrics or trauma services now and closes at 6pm every day, mainly due to a lack of nurses.
– Kannigapuram: The building project is going along strongly and when completed will be providing Accident and trauma care and hope to specialise in Cancer Care and Cardiology. Hugh showed us an DVD with ?architectural? impression of the completed hospital and a Drone footage of the current site with 50% of the building work done including the 950 houses for the staff.
Student Selection ? CMC wants to retain autonomy and it is a serious challenge to accept the proposed system whereby the government has final say in the choice of intake of majority of the students. CMC had appealed against the decision. The case has been to the Supreme Court but got differed a few times it has come to the stage any more delay may mean that due to time restrains it may not be possible to take any students this year.
Finances are strong even though the demonetisation of the rupee did cost the hospital revenue. There is a possibility GST could be introduced in India for health services, which is bound to have its own consequences.
CMC now has a ?Department of Mission? Originally funded by UK FOV but now taken over by CMC.
Hugh acknowledged the donations by Australian FOV for the various Projects – Endowments Fund for the unexpected Complications (our major recipient, replacing the ?Endowment Fund? which we have been supporting for many years), Emergency Fund (for all patients), Person-to-Person (the grant for each patient has now increased), Scholarships ? Paramedical and Nursing Students, Distance Education, Jawadhi Hills, Low Cost-Effective Care Unit, RUSA – to name a few. He thanked us for our kind generosity.
Hugh also gave us ideas of various other areas where our future money could be donated, which will be taken into consideration by the Board, later.

Annual Reports were presented by the President, Secretary, Treasurer, State Representatives from Queensland, Tasmania, New South Wales, Victoria and Alumni Association. Stephen Aseervatham also presented a discussion paper outlining various matters for consideration by the board with the view of our vision for the future.
During General Business:
It was noted that with the funds we sent in the past (A$20,000.00), a suitable 4-wheel drive vehicle was purchased for the use by the Jawadhi Hills team, the slight short fall in cost was met by the department.
Regarding our enquiry about the progress on buying land in the Jawadhi Hills ? we believe it is still at the stage whereby the appropriate paper work is being sought and it will be some time before any progress could take place.
The board approved the funds for the following two projects which were discussed before at the teleconference.
i. Funding for Accredited Social and Health workers for the Jawadhi Hills – A$10,000
ii. ICU Ambulance for Kannigapuram – A$57,000.00
Election of Board of Directors: The following were elected for the coming year.
President: Stephen Aseervatham
Vice President: David Runia
Secretary: Evelyn Lehmann
Treasurer/Public Officer: Richard Caitens
Publicity Officer: Chellam Kirubakaran

Richard Caitens. The Treasurer presented the financial report for the year 2016/17 and the Budget for 2017/18. It was approved and passed by the Board. A list of designated donations was also circulated.
Richard advised P Thorpe and Partners have been appointed as the auditors and the accounts are expected to be audited before the next teleconference.
During Special Business
a) It was noted that the on-line donation facilities are now functional and automatic tax receipts are issued through PayPal.
b) It was proposed to have the immediate past president to be a member of the board. It was passed by the Board.

Stephen Aseervatham thanked Bella George for her dedicated work as President of AVB for the past 3 years He also thanked the Qld branch of the FOV for the hard work and effort which went into arranging the AGM ? the venue and the catering.
He thanked Hugh Skeil for attending the AGM and his excellent presentation which was enjoyed by all present and thanked the delegates who attended the AGM from inter-state as well as Queensland.
It was proposed to hold the next AGM in Adelaide in August 2018 to coincide with the SA FOV annual dinner and convenience of the new Director J.V. Peter if he could possibly attend; tentatively fixed for 25th August 2018, but to be confirmed.
The meeting closed with prayer by Hugh Skeil followed by the singing of the College Song ? ?Silver and Blue?

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