6-year-old diagnosed with Kala-azar in Bajura

Published On: November 14, 2023 05:00 PM NPT By: Krishna Oli

BAJURA, Nov 14: Cases of Kala-azar (Black Fever) have emerged in Bajura, with 6-year-old Chiring Thapa from Himali Rural Municipality-2 diagnosed with the disease.

Thapa, who had been unwell for three months, was brought to Bajura District Hospital on the night of April 12. Following an examination, the hospital confirmed that Thapa is suffering from Kala-azar infection.

Kala-azar is transmitted through the bite of a specific type of sandfly. Thapa, at 6 years old, has reached an advanced stage of the infection. Due to a lack of medication at the hospital, he has been advised to seek treatment in Dhangadhi. Bajura District Hospital is currently facing a shortage of essential medicines.

The ailing Thapa has a blood count of only 2 points, whereas a minimum of 11 points is required. His body weight is a mere 13 kg, significantly below the expected 20 kg for a 6-year-old. Despite the critical stage of the condition, immediate administration of medicine appears challenging at the hospital.

Bajura District Hospital has indicated that they have requested the required medicines, either at the district hospital or the health office. Unfortunately, there is no stock of Kala-azar vaccines in Bajura. Health workers state that at least 4 doses of the vaccine are essential for Thapa's treatment.

Nrip Raj Giri, the hospital's information officer, explained that a single vial's cost is at least Rs 10,000, and due to the absence of proper cold storage facilities for stock maintenance, medicines must be procured externally.

Giri mentioned that Bajura District Hospital referred Thapa elsewhere as medical treatment alone would not suffice. However, the patient's family declined to take him out of the district. Despite the hospital offering free treatment and attempting to provide financial assistance for transportation, the relatives refused, and Thapa is currently undergoing treatment through blood transfusions.

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