With the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic unfolding around the world, Nepal’s infection rate is on the rise, with confirmed cases detected in 71 of 77 districts. Most of the children we treat live in remote and impoverished areas and don’t have access to important information to protect themselves from the virus. Our work at this time is two-fold. We must continue to care for children who have been treated and are now at the hospital or at home in their villages, and we must provide COVID-19 information and hygiene kits to as many disabled children and families as possible.
Standing apart and working together, hospital staff learn best practices to keep everyone safe.
Our vast network of Community Based Rehabilitation workers is marshalling a response at the ground level, working closely with families, government agencies, and local hospitals. With four regional centers and 76 staff located throughout the country, we are practicing telemedicine. In the last month, our regional centers and hospital fielded more than 1,000 calls from families regarding their children, and we anticipate that number to rise in the coming months. When x-rays are needed, patients go to local hospitals, and the x-rays are sent to us using social media. This innovation allows us to provide uninterrupted care to young patients who are on a path to rehabilitation.
At the HRDC hospital in Banepa, 15 children undergoing treatment remain in residence.
Our Community Based Rehabilitation workers are also raising awareness of COVID-19 and distributing hygiene kits – face masks, soap, and hand sanitizer – throughout the country. Each kit costs $25 and we have the capacity to deliver 2000 hygiene kits every month once funds are secured.
At the HRDC hospital in Banepa, 15 children undergoing treatment remain in residence. Using full protective masks and clothing, we are safely performing time-sensitive operations. Once lockdown is lifted, we will put in place stringent screening procedures for all children and caregivers who are admitted, including PCR tests.
Safety starts with a clean hospital.
Our work is critical. In the short term, thousands of young children need our continued care during their rehabilitation. Just as important, their families need information to protect themselves from becoming infected with COVID-19. And, once the lockdown is lifted, our mobile medical camps will resume so we can respond to children who have developed serious infections which require surgery, have accidentally fallen into chulas (open fires in kitchen), developed tumors, and other life-threatening conditions. Please help us respond – quickly and safely.
Your donation today to HRDC can help to:
Equip community-based rehabilitation workers with personal protective equipment, including masks, gloves, and suits: $5.17 per person per day
Provide hygiene kits and essential COVID-19 information – including how to wash hands without running water – to disabled children and villagers in remote areas: $25 per kit
Provide COVID-19 tests to children who must undergo surgery for urgent conditions: $99 per test
Equip surgeons and nurses with protective face and eye masks and disposable surgical gowns and PPE: $107 per person per surgery
Please give generously.
Critical surgeries continue during lockdown.