Himalayan News Service

Kathmandu, January 28:

Shahid Gangalal National Heart Centre (SGNHC) celebrated its ninth anniversary today. Inaugurating the function, Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba said the government would lend its support to the centre to help provide free medical services to people living below the poverty line.

“The government has given health top priority. And to ensure people a healthy life, it will provide all kinds of support to the centre to develop human resource and provide medical facility at an affordable price,” he said. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), Deuba said that heart disease has become a major cause of death in third world countries, hence SGNHC’s effort to combat heart problems is praiseworthy. As support, the government has been giving 100 valves free of cost every year. SGNHC executive director Dr Bhagwan Koirala said that the centre provides services worth Rs 1 crore to the poor yearly.

He added the centre has now become self-sufficient and will be able to bear a yearly expenditure of Rs 12 crores from its internal resources. The centre will also start an electrophysiological study of heart from this year. And it has also been “successful in minimising the failure rate by three per cent of the international standard”. The PM laid the foundation stone for a modern well-equipped 100-bed hospital, thereby doubling the hospital’s capacity. He also inaugurated the Gopal Kamala Surgical and ICU Block, which is made up of two surgical wards and one surgical ICU of 10 beds, and was built at a cost of Rs 2 crores.

Social activist Gopal Rajbhandari had given Rs 60 lakh to build the block, while the rest of the cost was borne by SGNHC. The centre has done 1,500 heart surgeries, over 1,000 angiographies, over 200 balloon valvatomy, over 50 angioplasty and 150 pacemaker transplantations till date.