Kathmandu, December 5
A telemedicine service has been inaugurated at the Rabi Primary Health Centre, Miklajung, Panchthar on Wednesday, December 1. Locals have expressed their happiness over the facility.
Miklajung rural municipality launched the service with the support from the Renewable Energy for Rural Area (RERA), a joint Nepali-German initiative under the guidance of the Ministry of Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation, Alternative Energy Promotion Centre (AEPC), with technical assistance by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, acting on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).
Simon Heinkele, the deputy head of Development Cooperation at the German Embassy to Nepal inaugurated the service.
“Due to remote and poor road conditions, people have limited access to better health services. They also need to spend more money and time to get expert health services. Patients have lost their lives in absence of health services in the remote area,” the local government’s chief Amar Raj Makhim says, “Therefore, we thought about telemedicine to ensure better connectivity to expert doctors. We arranged a certain portion of the budget and received support from the RERA programme both financially and technically to come this into reality.”
Now onwards, with the help of the internet, locals can access services of tertiary hospitals, the Koshi Hospital in Biratnagar in particular, through video conferences. They hope the service also helps fulfil the gap between expert hospitals and local rural health facilities by connecting rural health care services with urban health facilities.
Now onwards, patients from rural areas have direct access to expert doctors through telemedicine applications. More than 84 patients have sought help from expert doctors right after the start of the service.
The RERA programme has supported three primary health centres, one each in Panchthar, Bhojpur and Bajhang.