Rural Assistance Nepal
Working with a doctor who wants to set up a small community hospital to provide affordable and high quality medical care to the mid-western hill districts of Pyuthan and Rolpa, RAN is assisting with the project management of the set up of this hospital.
Of 65 district hospitals in Nepal, only 14 can perform surgery. There are few good hospitals outside of Kathmandu and even fewer doctors willing to work outside the capital or the cities.
In particular, maternity services in the rural areas are very limited. The majority of women give birth to babies, unattended and maternal mortality is very high in Nepal.
Access to emergency treatment is very limited in the remote areas, where hospitals are few and far between, and doctors scarce. Access to good pre-natal care is limited, and most women are not educated or aware of the importance of check-ups.
This will be a small community hospital, with an operating theatre to provide comprehensive emergency obstetric care services. A fifteen bed hospital for the poor, the hospital will also run a nurses' training school. This non-profit community hospital is needed at Bhalubang to serve the rural poor from the western districts of Pyuthan, Dang and Rolpa. Strategically positioned on the East-West Highway, this will maximise access to medical healthcare not only to the immediate area but also to the nearby districts of Arghakhanchi, Salyan and Kapilvastu in the Lumbini Zone.
The nearest hospitals for the communities in this remote western area of Nepal are more than 100km away, in towns to the east and to the west. Building the hospital in Bhalubang will mean poor people from the hill districts near to where this hospital is to be set up will have better access to affordable and vital healthcare facilities.
Improved healthcare is desperately needed in all areas, but in the remote areas like this, there are next to facilities, and this will be a life-saver for many of the country's poorest people. The hospital will have to charge nominal fees for services, which will cover the running costs of the hospital. Funding will also be needed to provide free services to the very needy.
Money is needed to build a small hospital, nurses' training school and accommodation for staff. Land has been donated by the local community. As well as building costs, equipment such as ultra-sound and x-ray machines, lab equipment etc. will be needed. A surgeon and doctors, with nurses and support staff to run the 15-bed hospital will be needed. Income from hospital services will cover running costs and help subsidise treatment for the poor.
Land is being provided by the local community. It is estimated that the cost to build the hospital will be around £750,000. In addition, £25,000 will be needed for equipment such as ultrasound and x-ray machines. About £40,000/year will be needed for staff costs. Small charges will be made for many services, and it is estimated that these will cover the cost of staff, but for the very poor, help will be needed to ensure that treatment is free or subsidised.
The local community will provide labour and local raw materials for the construction of the hospital. Land from the community forest is being donated, in an ideal location near to the road and easily accessible to the roads leading to Pyuthan and Rolpa Districts, close to Bhalubang.
Funding is needed to build and equip the hospital.
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