Contemptible Silence: No -show of the Health Minister while Nepal suffers


KATHMANDU, Sept 17:  With over 3899 cases of Dengue fever and many more down with viral and other climate-related infections, Nepal is undergoing one of its worse health crisis of all times. While the scourge of Dengue spreads within and outside the valley the silence of the Health Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Upendra Yadav is highly contemptible.

Just a few days ago, member of the opposition Nepali Congress Party, Sanjay Kumar Gautam had raised serious concerns and demanded that the Health Minister resign.

The Health Minister went to Delhi earlier this month to attend a program while the capital and the country was in an emergency dealing with various infectious diseases. According to the Sukraraj Tropical & Infectious Disease Hospital (STIDH) in Teku Kathmandu, they are out of staff and overworked. Thousands of samples are being sent to them for dengue testing and people are lined up every day making it difficult for the management to get more staff.

The current government has not been able to manage this threat that has already claimed the lives of 6 people across the country. Serious attention needs to be taken toward waste disposal management and fumigation.

Recently during a press interaction with the Reporters Club Dr. Basudev Pandey Director of STIDH informed the people about the grave dangers of various viral illnesses including Dengue.

The Health Minister should be accountable for the thousands who are sick, with no respite and increasing medical bills. Although the Health Minister was of the opinion that “it is impossible to be prosperous without access to free healthcare for the general public” while speaking on an event organized in BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences in Dharan marking the institutions 26th anniversary. Little has been done to get access to treatment or medications when dealing with Dengue which has no specific line of treatment.

While people continue to suffer and the monsoon rains extend it is unlikely that the situation will improve in the coming days. The Health Minister has to raise these issues in the Cabinet and ensure that there is fumigation, cleanliness and waste management, while the entire government needs to be proactive toward the plight of the common man.