Stroke Foundation of Bengal (SFB) observed World Stroke Day this year on 29th Oct in collaboration with the Indian Medical Association, Bengal State Branch. The program, held at the auditorium of the Bidhannagar   Salt Lake) Municipality Building began with the welcome address by Dr .A.Shobhana, Secretary, SFB,who dwelt on the concept of WSD, its history, why SFB was born, the “1 in 6” campaign and the slogan for 2012-Because I care. She stressed on the peculiarities of Indian Stroke, mainly younger age groups affected and more of hemorrhagic ones. She urged the Government to take the leadership in fighting stroke like in New Zealand, Brazil, and Japan etc. This was followed by a video documentary on WSD 2012, created by SFB for the masses… The program was formally inaugurated by the lighting of the ceremonial lamp by Smt. Chandrima Bhattacharya, Hon’ble Minister of State, Department of Health & Family Welfare Department, Govt. of West Bengal, who in her inaugural speech expressed concern over the rising stroke epidemic as the “1 in 6” implied a mammoth figure when translated into Indian statistics with a population of over 120 crores. She appreciated the activities of SFB as it has highlighted   the real problems of a very important and devastating disease – Stroke (Brain Attack). She was also impressed by the slogan of the year “Because I care…” particularly in the Indian set up where the care givers are family members. She stressed on the good health and well being especially good nutrition to the Indian women who are most often homemakers turned to caregivers. Smt.Bhattacharya   assured of help from the Government under leadership of Smt. Mamata Banerjee, the Ho’ble Chief Minister, who is also in Charge of Health Ministry. This year as the WSD coincided with the Lakshmi Puja (Goddess of Wealth) Festival in Bengal, it was all the more imperative that proper lifestyle leading to good   health is the greatest wealth. Smt  Krishna Chakraborty, Hon’ble Chairperson of Bidhannagar Municipality  echoed  the minster’s thoughts and stressed on women looking after their health in developing countries.  Dr.R.D.Dubey, President of Indian Medical Association, Bengal State Branch who was the special guest for the occasion, shared his experiences about misconceptions of stroke with heart attack and how missing anti-hypertensive medicines killed a man due to hemorrhagic stroke. He also highlighted the fact that so far Indian agencies were busy with communicable diseases but neglected the Non communicable ones and this had led to the rising incidence of stroke and other lifestyle diseases. He also praised the initiative taken by Stroke Foundation solely without much help from any source. He emphatically said IMA would work together with SFB in spreading stroke education and campaign especially among the general physicians through all its branches in West Bengal. The SFB President,Prof D.K.Mandal stressed upon the Slogan: “Know Stroke , Act Now,  Fight Stroke & Join the Campaign”. He  also  enumerated  about the Stroke Solidarity String  and reiterated the need to have good networking for effective stroke care. He emphasized on marching ahead of 29th OCT with more educational programs and clinical research and database. In this context he appealed to the Government and local bodies for all necessary helps to combat stroke devastation including Tele-stroke facilities so that the patients of especially of rural areas do not suffer (where basic facilities are mostly lacking). This is necessary as the number of stroke patients is  too high as compared to the number of stroke physicians and paramedical personnel. This system of Tele-stroke services have been adopted in many countries with great success. As part of the WSD activities he also explained “FAST” to recognize stroke. The other guests of the day Sri Sabyasachi Dutta,Vice Chairman of Bidhannagar Municipality, Mr. Malay Mukhopadhyaya, SDO Bidhannagar,  The audience included people from all walks of life, patients, caregivers and health care workers. The day concluded with the vote of thanks by Dr.Dolan Das,Asst Secretary,SFB.