CHITWAN, Oct 4: To come down with even minor ailments can be a death sentence for the villagers of Madi in Chitwan district, as there is no doctor for their immediate treatment.
It´s been two years since the health care centre and health posts in Madi have been operating without any doctor.
Fever cost the lives of five villagers recently. Doctor´s treatment was too late for Lekha and her sister Mayna along with three others when they reached Bharatpur hospital.
They had relied solely on medicines recommended by various drugs outlets in the villages. Their health had deteriorated even as they rushed from one outlet to another.
“It was a mistake taking my daughters to the medical shops. Should have followed my heart and rushed them to Bharatpur Hospital right away,” said Ghana Shyam, father of the deceased sisters.
Had there been a doctor in Madi, they would have easily survived.
“They would have lived if they had received treatment by a doctor in Madi. They would not have taken unnecessary medicines from the medical shops,” said local resident Chandra Kant Upadhyaya.
There are three health posts and one primary health centre in Madi and none of them has a permanent doctor.
According to locals, Dr Binod Singh, who was appointed for two years, never took up his post at the health centre and Dr Suraj, who replaced him for a year, also remained absent during his tenure. For the last six months, Madi has been without any doctor.
With a population around 80,000, the Madi valley has been people die of many causes including snakebites, and pregnant women are unable to receive timely doctor´s attention when required, informed locals.
According to Senior Assistant Health Worker Shiva Prashad Subedi at Baghauda Health Center, the District Public Health Office has been regularly informing the authorities about the need to fill the vacant doctor´s post, but there has been no response.
“Around 200 patients visit us every day but we are not able to treat them properly because we don´t have enough doctors,” said Shiva.
He informed that the center also lacks medical equipment and trained hands to operate them. The situation regarding other health posts is similar.
However, Public Health Inspector Shiva Prasad Ghimire said that the doctors appointed are unable to take up their posts due to the regular examinations and trainings that they have to attend.