Foundation stone laid for fistula centre
We are thrilled to be able to announce that the construction work for the Fistula Treatment Centre is well underway. The official ceremony to lay the foundation stone took place recently.
The centre is being built in Surkhet at the Mid-Western Regional Hospital.
There were many guests and hospital staff present for the ceremony. The foundation stone was laid by representatives from the hospital, the District Public Health Office, and INF. During the ceremony Dr Dambar Khadka, the Medical Superintendent at the hospital, expressed thanks for INF's continued support. He also acknowledged the contribution of Dr Shirley, INF's gynaecologist, towards fistula treatment in Nepal, and her efforts to make a fistula centre for western Nepal a reality.
Before the end of February next year there will be a building with 17 beds. The staff there will offer both medical and surgical services to fistula patients.
INF's work with women with fistula
Since 2009 INF has run fistula camps in the remote Western districts of Nepal. These camps have brought healing to many women, and helped to combat the stigma they carry. Despite the previous lack of facilities, over 200 patients have been treated during this time. Every year these camps have given women restored hope and new lives. Women labelled ‘a burden’ by their family are now able to contribute to the household income. Others shunned by their family and community because they leaked urine have become dry. Some have even had babies.
In a little over a year, women with obstetric fistula, will no longer need to wait for the annual camps to receive the treatment they need. The Fistula Centre will be the first facility of its kind in western Nepal. It will be a place where patients can be treated, counselled and cared for throughout the year, by well trained and dedicated staff. Doctors and nurses will be able to come and receive specialist training.
For those women who suffer for years in silence thinking that there is no cure for their condition and feeling too embarrassed to seek help, this centre means more than physical recovery for them. It brings hope for a transformed life.
The project is being funded by TERRA TECH, BMZ, Projekt 33, and INF/UK.