In the autumn we left for the West of Nepal, in particular the districts of Bahjang and Dadeldhura.
Bahjang district is one of the poorest in Nepal. There is just one road, or rather a track, leading to Chainpur, the district capital.
The district is located more than 120km by road from Katmandu. It takes two and a half days of travelling to get there, the last 120kms taking 7 hours….Chainpur is two days walk from the Tibetan frontier.
We conducted a five day camp there. 85 patients had surgery performed, 62 of whom were under 18! The most frequently encountered pathology among the young was a handicapping deformation of the elbow resulting from an old fracture which had not been treated. 45 youngsters presented this type of deformation.
Bahjang district is over 300kms from the nearest hospital offering more specialised care. The cost of a trip for three people (usually a patient will travels with one or two members of his family) is around 9000 rupees (+/- 80 €), which is the equivalent of an average monthly salary intown; the cost of surgery is a minimum of 30,000 rupees (+/- 260 €). Medical treatment in town is therefore
extremely costly in these poor regions. It is beyond the means of most of the inhabitants of these very poor regions. To go to them with a Mobile Hospital at a cost not exceeding 150 € per patient operated on is thus very useful.
On the way back, a shorter second camp was held under the same conditions in Dadeldhura District.