Updated: July 09, 2021 11:22 AM GMT
Caritas Nepal staff deliver medical supplies to a municipal body during the Covid-19 pandemic. (Photo: Caritas Nepal)
The Catholic Church’s social agency Caritas has paired up with US-based Catholic Relief Services (CRS) to launch an emergency Covid-19 relief scheme to provide much-needed medical supplies to the country’s hospitals
The scheme will run from July to September and aims to provide 20 hospitals in 14 districts of Nepal with medical supplies.
Among the equipment are oxygen cylinders, oxygen concentrators, pulse oximeters, face masks and personal protective equipment including isolation gowns, face shields, shoe covers, safety goggles, surgical head caps, heavy duty gloves, surgical masks, surgical gloves and hand sanitizers.
On July 8, Caritas Nepal delivered a consignment of medical items to Paropkar Maternity and Women’s Hospital in capital Kathmandu.
The hospital authority expressed gratitude to Caritas Nepal and its member organization for the gesture of kindness.
“This equipment will be utilized by our frontline workers while providing service to the mothers and babies who are fighting for their life in the Covid section of our hospital,” said Dr. Sunil Sharma Acharya, a physician of the hospital.
Since last year, Caritas Nepal has carried out a range of assistance programs for affected communities in 23 districts
A similar consignment was handed over to Mechi Hospital in Jhapa district of eastern Nepal.
Devendra Pokharel, a regional manager of Caritas Nepal, said the agency believes the equipment will help hospitals that have struggled to serve patients when the second of wave of the pandemic triggered a high rate of infections and patients with severe respiratory problems suffered amid a shortage of oxygen.
Since last year, Caritas Nepal has carried out a range of assistance programs for affected communities in 23 districts of the country with funding from partners and donors including the CRS.
Caritas Nepal established 150 units of hand-washing stations established in rural and urban municipalities, distributed 10,000 units of Covid-19 safety kits (masks, sanitizer, thermal guns, etc.) to individuals, health workers, health posts, quarantine centers and humanitarian workers.
It provided 7,252 households with food relief and 24,540 smallholder farming households with agricultural input.
In addition, it carried out a Covid-19 precautionary awareness campaign that reached out to 100,000 people.
Nepal has registered more than 651,000 cases and over 9,320 deaths from Covid-19. About half of the cases and two-thirds of deaths have been registered since the second wave of the pandemic struck Nepal in April, local media reported.
The Nepali government has faced criticisms for negligence and unpreparedness amid a sluggish vaccination drive as the highly contagious Delta variant wreaked havoc in neighboring India.