Shortage of Jeevan Jal hits patients hard in Rautahat

Published On: May 22, 2018 05:00 AM NPT By: Madan Thakur

RAUTAHAT, May 22: With the rise in temperature, the number of people suffering from diarrhea and other water-borne diseases has increased significantly in Rautahat. But unfortunately, all health posts of the district are currently dealing with the scarcity of Jeevan Jal, the most popular brand of Oral Rehydration Salts (ORS) in the country. This has added to the woes of the patients.

There are altogether 92 government health centers in Rautahat and all of them are reeling under an acute shortage of Jeevan Jal. Patients are offered with Zinc tablets in the health posts but they hardly find Jeevan Jal, which is often considered a life-saving medicine whose demand increases in summer. As a result, locals had to go to private medical stores to get it. On Sunday, seven patients suffering from diarrhea came for a check-up at the Auraiya health post of Isnath Municipality.

Health Worker Seema Chaudhary informed Republica that the patients were provided with Metron (antibiotic) and Zinc tablets but they were referred to the nearby pharmacy for Jeevan Jal. "It has been more than three months since there has been a shortage of Jeevan Jal and other medicines at the health posts," said health worker Seema, adding," We have time and again drawn the attention of the District Public Health Office(DPHO) and the municipality office but nothing has been done."

According to another health worker Kamali Devi Baniya, officials of the health posts are doing their best to provide services to the patients but they can do nothing about the unavailability of medicines. As per the provision, government health organizations should offer 70 different types of medicines free of cost. But in reality, that has been nothing more than a myth. When the government first made this announcement, people especially those from the poor and marginalized community were related but they could not really enjoy this privilege.

Though the government had allocated funds to the local units for purchasing medicines for the health institutions, due to the negligence of representatives and government officials, people are still struggling in the lack of medicines. Dr Krishna Sah, chief of DPHO, Rautahat, said that the number of patients suffering from diarrhea, typhoid, skin allergies among others has increased significantly in recent days due to the scorching heat.

Even the District Hospital, Gaur does not have sufficient amount of free medicines for the patients. Aware of the miserable condition of health institutions, the government recently provided a budget of Rs 2.5 million to the district. As informed by Dr Sah, efforts are underway to solve this problem.

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