The devastating earthquake which struck Kathmandu on Saturday, April 25th has displaced over two million people, destroyed over 600,000 homes and businesses and more importantly taken the lives of what will probably end up being close to 10,000 Nepali citizens. The sheer number of critically injured patients has overwhelmed the local Kathmandu Hospitals. The HMF along with another NGO, Adara has set up emergency “Health Camps” in areas of Kathmandu most severely affected.
We are hoping to have all seven HMF clinics back open and operational by next week but currently, officials are touring the monasteries which have HMF clinics to ascertain which buildings are structurally sound and can be safely used or repaired and which one’s will have to be demolished and rebuilt. It appears at the moment that none of the buildings where the HMF clinics are based were badly damaged and so we hope that we will be able to reopen our clinics sometime during the second week of May. However it has been very painful to learn that at least four monasteries we serve will need to level and rebuild their main Temples and Shrine Halls, the center of all their activities.
We estimate that the aftermath of the earthquake will triple the amount of patients needing treatment for a prolonged period of time. The Benchen Free Clinic at Syambunath, our oldest and busiest Clinic, will be open all day 6 days a week. As we are able to add more staff we will extend the number of days and hours at the other clinics as well. We recently hired a new Health Assistant, Bishnu Pokhara but we will need at least two more Health Assistants to handle the increased number of expected patients.
Many Kathmandu residents have been left emotionally traumatized and we expect to see PTSD, Anxiety, Depression and Sleep Disorders. We hope to hire a Mental Health Worker to help those patients. It is very likely that epidemics will break out in the Kathmandu Valley such as Meningitis, Dysentery including Cholera, Hepatitis A and B, Typhoid Fever, Measles, and Tuberculosis. We will need to address and treat patients with these problems and we will vaccinate as many of the monks and nuns as funds permit.
We need your help to address this severe crisis. One hundred percent of your donation will go directly to the medical relief efforts in Nepal. Please give generously.