A warm welcome awaited us!
Mountain Heart Nepal with CHANCE for NEPAL successfully conducted a comprehensive free school health camp and a mobile preventive health programme at the Shree Baira Mahadev Basic School, Shankarapur-4, Tinpane, on 19th November 2018. The village was one of the highly affected areas following the earthquake in 2015. The second floor of the school has been deemed unsafe to use after the earthquake and there are no funds to rebuild it. Most of the families are still living in temporary shelters since the earthquake over three and a half years ago! The recovery momentum appeared not to have arrived here, as we passed by damaged and hazardous unreconstructed shelters.
Although an hour and a half drive from the capital, the village at an altitude of 1500 meters appeared to have disengaged from the vibes of the city because of difficulty in public transport and rugged trails. Interestingly, the inhabitants were astonished to see our 4X4 reaching the campsite, primarily when the only mode of transportation in the village was big wheeled tractors.
Four doctors and one nurse from Mountain Heart Nepal screened and examined the health conditions of 170 children and 70 adults. The children underwent ENT, cardiac and nutritional assessment, and cases of upper respiratory tract infections, poor oral hygiene and poor general health were the most frequently encountered problems.
From this outreach clinic, we extended our service to screen for anaemia, made possible by our partner CHANCE for NEPAL who funded a Haemocoe device to test the haemoglobin of children and the medicines for this camp. This Haemocue will be invaluable for all future medical camps. A total of 46 children were screened for anaemia, and only 5 of them were found to be below the recommended level. Those with anaemia received prescription iron supplements and children with dental caries and poor oral hygiene were advised and provided with antiseptic mouthwash and toothbrushes provided by CHANCE. Similarly, prophylactic deworming was done to those children who missed the regular albendazole as per the national health program. Moreover, about 100 adults underwent general health check-ups and received free medicines as required. The majority of cases reported were COPD, URTI, arthritis, hypertension, and UTI.
Barbara taking the children’s haemoglobin
Toothbrushes and children’s stickers from CHANCE
One of the lovely hand knitted dolls which always brings comfort and a smile!
One of the highlights of the camp was the distribution of picture books on health and hygiene for the children from Grades 1 to 4, which was made possible by a generous donation from Ivy Tan, via CHANCE.
The long walk back to their temporary homes.
The children were all from extremely low-income families, many walking over an hour to school each day. They all received the carefully chosen books according to the grades to improve school attendance and promote health and disease awareness. Similarly, each family also received soap, shampoo and a jar of Vaseline provided by Direct Relief. Finally, the sharp needle disposing buckets were distributed to the local health centres of the neighbouring community.
CHANCE for Nepal has funded the medicines for 4 medical camps during 2018 as well as bought medical equipment and educational books.