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Top Five Institutes for Free Cancer Treatments in India

Governments across the nation work to make cancer treatment affordable for persons with low incomes. The Indian government has undertaken numerous measures in the past and currently to offer free and heavily discounted cancer care in India.

  • Mar 29, 2021

Cancer is one of the deadliest diseases that has been affecting human beings for years now. For 2020, in India alone, the expected incidence of cancer patients among males was over 6.5 lakhs, and among females, it was 7.1 lakhs. Moreover, in the Cancer Statistics Report of 2020 issued by the National Cancer Registry Programme, one in every nine Indians will likely develop cancer between 0-75 years of age. That said, the cost of cancer treatment in the country has also increased. Given such a rising burden of cancer disease and its sharply rising costs in India, it is advisable for everyone to follow a healthy lifestyle, avoid triggers and take good care of their health. Fighting cancer is emotionally, physically and financially draining.

That said, the cost of cancer treatment in the country has also increased. Given such a rising burden of cancer disease and its sharply rising costs in India, it is advisable for everyone to follow a healthy lifestyle, avoid triggers and take good care of their health. Fighting cancer is emotionally, physically and financially draining.

Key takeaways

The top 5 institutes for free cancer treatment in India are:

  • Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai
  • The Regional Cancer Centre (RCC), Thiruvananthapuram
  • The Cancer Institute (WIA), Chennai
  • Cancer Aid and Research Foundation (CARF)
  • Kidwai Memorial Institute of Oncology (KMIO), Bangalore

Several government initiatives aim to provide low-cost or free cancer treatment in India. In addition, there are some well-known institutes in the country which provide end-to-end, free cancer treatment with the help of the government and donations from across the world. Here is the best cancer hospital in India that offers free cancer treatment.

Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai

One of the oldest cancer hospitals in India is Tata Memorial Hospital. It was set up in 1941 by Sir Dorabji Tata. The hospital is a classic example of private philanthropy and government partnership for better service, research and treatment in the field of cancer. Today, the institute takes pride in advanced cancer treatment techniques and cancer research. Every year more than 6,000 new patients visit the different clinics of the hospital from across the country, as well as neighbouring countries.

More than 60% of such patients get primary cancer treatment at the hospital, and 70% of these patients get free cancer treatment in Mumbai at this hospital. In addition to providing patient care and service, the hospital supports various clinical research programmes and trials which enable the hospital to enhance patient care delivery.

The hospital is known for its trained staff and experienced doctors and is also well-equipped for all types of cancer and related diagnostics tests such as ultrasounds, MRIs, CT scans, real-time nuclear medicine scanning, PET scans, and more. It has further progressed its capability in the space of radiation therapy and chemotherapy owing to clinical trials and research.

In 1983, the Tata Memorial Hospital was the first institute in India to conduct the Bone Marrow Transplant. That said, the Tata Memorial Hospital is the best cancer hospital in Mumbai and also offers supportive care, including total rehabilitation, patient counselling, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, medical social work, and more.

Location: Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Address: Dr E Borges Road, Parel, Mumbai - 400012 India

Phone: +91-22- 24177000, 24146750 – 55 Fax: +91-22-24146937


The Regional Cancer Centre (RCC), Thiruvananthapuram

Established in 1981 by the Government of Kerala and the Government of India, RCC is an internationally known institute offering best-in-class facilities for cancer diagnosis, treatment, palliation and rehabilitation. The RCC is owned by the state and operates under the ‘National Cancer Control Programme of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

The centre caters to cancer patients in the state of Kerala and nearby areas of the states of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. It is considered one of the premier cancer hospitals in the country and conducts several extensive research on various types of cancers.

In addition to the clinical and scientific progress, RCC also aims to help less-privileged people suffering from cancer. In fact, RCC is considered one of the best cancer hospitals in India for free treatment. Approximately 53% of all RCC patients get free cancer treatment, and more than 27% of the patients, especially in the middle-income class group, receive cancer treatment at subsidised rates.

The centre provides modern facilities like CT scans, chemotherapy, etc., free of cost. In 2014, RCC became the first government-owned cancer hospital to receive the respected NABH accreditation. This and some other significant achievements have made RCC one of the most sought-after cancer hospitals in the country that offers free cancer treatment.

Location: Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India

Address: Medical College Campus, Medical College Road, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala - 695011, India

Phone: +91-471-2442541 Fax: +91-471-2442539


Cancer Aid and Research Foundation (CARF)

A medical NGO and non-profit charitable organisation, the Cancer Aid and Research Foundation, India, was founded in 2001 to provide standard healthcare and free cancer treatment in Mumbai. Until today, CARF has contributed significantly to providing optimum cancer treatment for less privileged Indians.

That said, in addition to providing medical and financial assistance to cancer patients, CARF also supports free accommodation for outstation patients and their families during the course of cancer treatment. This is inclusive of returning railway fare to their respective hometowns after the completion of the treatment.

Further, CARF provides free ambulance service to cancer patients in Mumbai and free counselling and medical guidance to all patients. In the last 20 years, CARF has worked to provide free cancer treatment to more than 13,000 poor and needy patients across 1782 hospitals in India.

Location: Mumbai

Address: Unit No. 103, Shivkripa Industrial Estate, Vikhroli West, Mumbai - 400083

Phone: +91-22-23007000, +91-22-23005000


Kidwai Memorial Institute of Oncology (KMIO), Bangalore

KMIO caters to needy cancer patients from Karnataka and neighbouring states. Each year, the hospital registers nearly 17,000 new cancer patients.

The Kidwai Cancer Drug Foundation (KCDF), a unit of KMIO, was founded to provide costly anti-cancer drugs for patients at 50% lesser than the market price. The institute also runs community programmes to spread cancer awareness.

It has also established a cancer detection clinic to support the free diagnosis of cancer. The best cancer hospital in Chennai has modern machines and state-of-the-art infrastructure to provide free cancer treatment in Bangalore to patients below the poverty line.

Location: Bengaluru, Karnataka, India

Address: Dr M.H Marigowda Road, Bangalore - 560029, Karnataka, India

Phone: +91-080-26094000 Fax: +91-080-6560723


The Cancer Institute (WIA), Chennai

Established more than 50 years ago, the WIA was set up to offer ‘Service to All’, irrespective of the social or economic status of the patient. The institute is a voluntary public charitable institute, which has been providing dedicated and economical diagnosis, and treatment for cancer in the country since its inception.

The institute has over 500 beds, of which only 40% are paying beds, while the rest are general beds where patients are lodged and boarded free of cost. In addition, 40% of the total patients get advanced cancer treatment without any charge, and the remaining patients pay only a nominal fee, as compared to other hospitals.

Furthermore, the institute has an advanced research division, a college of oncological sciences, and another division of preventive oncology. In 1956, the institute became the first place in South East Asia to install the Cobalt-60 teletherapy unit.

Overall, the WIA offers inpatient services, outpatient services, diagnostic services, therapeutic services, radiation oncology, surgical oncology, paediatric oncology, psychology, allied services, tumour registry, and free cancer treatment in Chennai.

Location: Chennai

Address: Cancer Institute (WIA), Sardar Patel Road, Adyar, Chennai, Tamil Nadu - 600020

Phone: 044 22209150

In addition to increasing awareness about cancer treatment in India, it is also beneficial to buy a comprehensive health insurance policy that can help you financially battle a Critical disease such as Cancer. Even in the free-of-cost cancer institutes (free cancer treatment in Kolkata or free cancer treatment in Delhi), some aspects of the treatment are payable by the patient.

Further, patients must also qualify for specific criteria to qualify for free cancer treatment. With a health insurance plan, you can become financially capable of paying your treatment costs and relieving your family from the monetary burden which can otherwise weigh them down amidst critical times. Cancer is a serious health disease that causes several deaths worldwide in India. Hence, it is the best cancer hospital in Kolkata to be fully aware and adequately prepared to fight Cancer.

In this battle, Kotak Life offers you Kotak Heath Shield, a fixed-benefit health insurance plan that financially secures you in case of early or major ailments related to Cancer, Cardiac, Liver and Neuro related health problems. The plan also offers protection against Personal accidents, including accidental death and disability.

Further, you can extend the cover to include your spouse.

The Kotak Health Shield plan charges economic premiums and offers services such as

  • Second medical opinion
  • Emergency medical evacuation
  • Medical monitoring
  • Medical repatriation
  • Compassionate visit

The plan also gives you the option to enhance your health coverage with add-on riders, such as

  • Daily Hospitalization
  • Cash Benefit
  • Waiver of Premium on being diagnosed with Minor Conditions
  • Income Benefits on being diagnosed with Major Diseases or Health Conditions

Besides, Section 80D deductions can be claimed for the premiums paid for the Kotak Health Shield plan


Your health is your greatest blessing. Today, more than ever, with the rising incidence of diseases and risk factors, it is critical to be prepared to face any future health adversity.

Moreover, the related costs of medical treatment have further aggravated the need for reliable financial assets like a health insurance policy. A comprehensive health insurance plan will cover the cost of cancer treatment, thereby financially securing you and your family against tough situations. Remember, your life is precious, and you deserve the best care possible!

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