Where people rent a chopper for Rs 3 lakh to go see a doctor!

GORKHA: Denizens of the northern parts of the district have been bearing the brunt of non-availability of health facilities with needed resources. There are health posts in the area but no medicines and health workers. The health staffers visit the area once a year only. Locals have to use helicopters to go for treatment in Kathmandu. Samagaun, Chhekampar, Lho, Prok, Bihi, Chunchet VDCs locals need to afford flying to Kathmandu in case of emergency.

Local of Samagaun Jigme Lama said, “We can survive if we can afford for the flight.’’ According to him, the villagers have to pay Rs 3 lakh to fly to Kathmandu. He added, “Mostly women lose lives during child birth if they cannot fly to Kathmandu.”

Locals lamented that those who cannot bear the expenses of a chopper die without treatment as those VDCs are very far from the district headquarters. Lakpa Dundup Lama, chairman, Numbri Cultural Youth Committee, said, “We see health staffers at the health post only during the time of immunisation.” The locals complained that peons at the health posts store the documents and medicines of the health posts in their houses.

The rich go for treatment via chopper but the poor have no alternative to wait for their death. The locals hence rely on lamas and shamans. A local of Chhekampar-2 Chiring Phunjo Lama said, “There are no staffers and no medicine in the health centres.

Staffers at the District Public Health Office (DPHO) also admitted that there were no health staffers in the area for the past 15 years. Dr Gunraj Lohani, chief, DPHO, said, “There are no health staffers in the areas for many years now.”

Lohani, however, maintained that 10 assistant health workers have been sent to the area recently.