For the nearly four million Nepalis suffering from some form of heart ailment, the government
has deputed just three heart specialists across the country, two at the Bir Hospital in the capital and one at the Regional Hospital, Pokhara. This, when the number of heart patients in Nepal has increased five-fold in the last decade. The absence of cardiologists at the outskirts has meant that rural heart patients have to make the arduous trip to the capital even for the treatment of minor heart diseases. At the same time, establishment of autonomous healthcare institutions like Sahid Gangalal National Heart Centre in Kathmandu and BP Koirala Institute of Health and Science at Dharan has made it unnecessary for Nepalis to go abroad for treatment of most heart complications.
At present, there are 80 heart specialists in Nepal. But the specialists should never be needed in the first place. Rather than pouring money on expensive treatment, it is so much wiser to never contract heart disease through improvement in one’s lifestyle. The main reason for the emergence of heart disease among the young section of the populace is their unmanaged lifestyle. Smoking, mental stress, poor diet and lack of exercises contribute more to the onset of heart disease than any other factor besides genetics. Conversely, controlled eating and more physical activities will make Nepalis healthy, wealthy and wise.