Prof M Krishnan Nair

Prof dr m krishnan nair was born in konni, kerala in 1939 dr nair completed his mbbs from the university of kerala in 1963 and joined as a tutor in the department of radiotherapy oncology, medical college, trivandrum in 1965 thereafter he went on to attain md (radiotherapy oncology) from the university of punjab in 1968 he also obtained training in the uk leading to the award of frcr (clinical oncology) from the university of london dr nair returned to become professor in the same department and went on to become the founding director of the regional cancer centre trivandrum(rcc) in 1981 he retired in 2003 after 22 years of untiring service as director of an institution he built up from scratch prof mk nair was a visionary with social commitment alleviating the suffering of patients was his primary focus he was an excellent clinician with high optimism during his tenure at rcc, prof nair started many new departments such as paediatric oncology, community oncology and pain and palliative medicine which were the first of their kind in india morphine availability was very poor in india in the eighties he made it available to patients through the pain clinic at rcc he started a facility for manufacture of oral morphine which has been a boon for suffering patients he initiated an innovative hospital based health insurance programme called cancer care for life whereby economically weaker individuals could obtain life time cancer treatment on paying a nominal one time premium in addition, paediatric and adolescent curable cancers were treated free of cost from revenue generated by rcc prof nair implemented a 10 year action plan in kerala and led the anti tobacco movement in kerala he highlighted the need early detection of cancer and addressed the issue of travel hurdles by setting up screening, early detection and follow up clinics through the length of kerala at ernakulam karunagappaly kozhenchery and palakkad it was during his time that rcc was designated as a who collaborating centre for cancer control for developing countries prof nair had unparalleled international and national repute in his time and served on several committees for cancer control to name a few, he was a prominent member of the planning group of the national cancer control programme of india and a member of the expert advisory panel on cancer of the world health organisation ( for a decade he has served in the advisory committee of the director general, who and cancer technical group of who he also served in the scientific advisory board of icmr and board of radiation and isotope technology of the department of atomic energy of india prof krishnan nair was a founding member of the association of radiation oncologists of india and served as national president from 1984 86 he had over 300 publications his areas of interest were health effects of background radiation in coastal areas, cancer epidemiology and empowerment of health care workers for cancer screening apart from clinical oncology research prof nair has inspired and trained a large number of medical professionals, who practice around the world and hold leadership roles in their own right he has received numerous awards including the bhishmacharya award of outstanding contribution in the field of medicine and roll of honour 1996 by international union against cancer ( geneva he was awarded the national civilian award padma shri in 2001 for his contributions to the field of cancer care following his retirement, mkn, as he is fondly known, practised at the amrita institute of medical sciences, kochi and sut hospital, trivandrum prof nair passed away on on 28 10 2021 but will continue to inspire the medical fraternity with his untiring work ethic and optimism in the fight against cancer