DR M Krishnan Nair
M. Krishnan Nair is a leading oncologist working in India. He is the founding director of the Regional Cancer Centre, Thiruvananthapuram, a director of the S.U.T. Institute of Oncology in Thiruvananthapuram(Trivandrum) and a professor at the Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences & Research in Kochi. He received the Padma Shri award from the President of India.
Nair earned his MBBS degree from University of Kerala, India in 1963, then went on to earn a MD (Radiotherapy and Clinical Oncology) from the University of Punjab in 1968. In 1972, he earned a FRCR (Clinical Oncology) from the Royal College of Radiologists in London.
As founding director of RCC, he was responsible for establishing one of the largest comprehensive cancer centres in India and for initiating programmes in Community Oncology, Pain and Palliative Care, and Paediatric Oncology for the first time in India. He was a member of the expert group that drew up the National Cancer Control Plan of India. He served the World Health Organization (WHO) for more than a decade in their Expert Advisory Panel on Cancer. Currently, he is the only member from India on the Advisory Committee of the Director General, WHO and Cancer Technical Group (CTG) of WHO.
He introduced for the first time an institution oriented and extremely inexpensive Cancer Insurance plan in India called Cancer Care for Life. He established five district-level peripheral centres for prevention and early detection and a pain relief and palliative care network with Morphine availability for terminal cancer patients.
He implemented a 10-Year Action Plan in Kerala which reduced tobacco consumption, improved early detection, enhanced therapy facilities, and provided palliative care and pain relief to substantial sections of dying cancer patients. This programme finds mention in IARC (Managerial Guidelines for NCCP (2002), World Cancer Report (2003)), and WHO documents.
He has assisted the World Health Organization as Consultant in several major workshops and meetings such as design modification of teletherapy machines 1992, preparation of managerial guidelines for cancer control 1994 and 2000, preparation of pain and palliative care guidelines 1994, the Cancer Technical Group meeting 2005, and the Cancer Advisory Group meeting 2005. He has served as the Director of the World Health Organization Collaborating Centre (No.130) since it was established until his retirement in November 2003. He has served as the Short-term Consultant in IARC three times and is a visiting scholar in Allegheny General Hospital, Stanford University, and University of Southern California.
Nationally, he has served as President, Association of Radiation Oncologists of India, Member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Indian Council of Medical Research, and Member of the Board of Radiation and Isotope Technology of the Department of Atomic Energy of India. He has done an exhaustive study on human health effects of background radiation in coastal areas of Kerala.