Dilapidated health post buildings affecting services in Doti
July 14, 2016 05:00 AM NPT
By: Arun Bam
Kadamandau health post building in Gairagaun VDC, Doti. Medics working at this decade-old health post building have been struggling to provide health treatment facilities to patients and store medicine as the rain water continuously seeps in during rains.
DOTI, July 14: Most of the health posts in Doti district are in such dilapidated conditions that when it starts to rain, it immediately starts dripping from their roof and when it sunny, the heat inside the building is unbearable.
Thamraj Binadi, In-charge at the Kadamandau Health Post in Gairagaun VDC, informed that the medicines storage facility and health services provided by the health facility have been severely affected due to hospital's condition. He accused poor construction materials used in constructing the health post for the mess. “When it rains, water continuously drips inside the room from the terrace. The consequent damp inside the room has been affecting medicine stored inside the health post. With no storage alternatives, it's been hard to preserve the medicines,” Binadi said.
The health post's building is constructed within the premises of Kadamandau Secondary School. It has one large and two small rooms. While OPD, In-charge's room and medicine storage are all maintained in the large room, another two small rooms are used for providing treatment to patients, including labor room. Though the health post was constructed a decade ago has only made a decade ago, it has already started to worn out.
Binadi said that he had filed necessary application for repairing the building at the Village Development Committee (VDC), District Development Committee (DDC) and Department of Health. But except the VDC, which has allocated some funds for buying land for constructing a new building for the hospital, other offices have turned deaf ear to his request.
The Simchaur sub health post building in Simchaur VDC, Doti.
Situation is worse at Baglek Health Post. The building of this health post has been completely useless. In order to continue providing health services, the health post has been transferred to a house in the locality. There are only two rooms at the health post in which, one is used as labor room and the other is used for general checkups. “We do not have any alternatives, other than to provide treatment services in such cramped rooms,” In charge Premi Kami said. “It is very difficult to manage space for the patients when we have many patients to attend to.”
This health post is also hit by a severe lack of facilities for storing medicine stock. For the storage, medicines need a very dry place but the continuous oozing from the ceiling keeps the room very cold. “It is difficult to preserve the medicine in such poor storing facility.” Kami said. “As we don't have good storage facility we procure medicine in small quantities from the district headquarters. Though such practice helps them in not wasting medicine because of dampness, this nonetheless creates shortage sometimes, Kami said.
Bagleg Health post has also been asking help for the reconstruction from the respective health offices in the district. Its officials have several meetings with concerned authorities at the local and district level, but so far it also has only managed to buy land for building the health post building.
The scenario of the health posts all over the Doti district is no different than the scenario of the two representative health posts, described above. Usually, most of the hospitals are without facilities and are of substandard maintenance.
Tejbikram Shahi, Senior Auxiliary Health Worker at District Public Health Office (DPHO), Doti, said that they had to work amid severe lacks of facilities essential at a health post. “Situation of health posts is pathetic but we can't just point to them and stop providing health services to the public” Shahi said. “In order to provide treatment to our patients, we have to figure out best possible ways to provide best possible treatment to the patients.”
Ministry of Health has specified standards for the construction of a health post building. The provision mandates that the demand paper prepared by the health post management committee must be submitted along with the land certificate to the DPHO for constructing a new hospital building. The documents are then recommended by the DPHO to the management division of the Department of Health Services.
DPHO informed that many health posts have been constructed during the last fiscal year and added that more were under construction. Its data claims that 17 health posts have been constructed so far and three are under construction. It has forwarded application for the construction of additional nine health posts to the department for approval. DPHO officials informed that it is not sure if all the applications will get a nod from the department. Though 31 health posts have been constructed through efforts of the locals, most of them do not meet the construction standards prescribed by the MoH.