General Secretary, Programme Director and Past President of the Nepal Heart Foundation.
As the Programme Director for National Programmes of the NHF, I have been extremely involved in the design and implementation of the RHD control programme, which was started in collaboration with the Nepal Government in 2008 and it is still in operation. Nepal RHD control Programme is a comprehensive package to organize public awareness, conduct heart screenings, training to heart disease prevention volunteers and medical professionals, deliver antibiotics for the secondary prophylaxis of RHD, administering penicillin injections to the RHD affected children through the Central, Regional, District and other selected hospitals and health facilities, providing access to the treatment and surgery for free to the potential RHD patients, etc.
During my professional life, I have been actively involved in organizing hundreds of heart health camps in remote areas of the country which have provided services to thousands of needy heart patients. I have also conducted several interaction programmes in the urban and remote districts of the country on prevention of heart diseases especially focusing on the lifestyle modifications and maintaining heart friendly healthier habits. I speak about physical fitness and exercise, cooking and eating healthy food, anti-tobacco issues, hypertensions, etc.
Under the RHD control programme, over 200,000 school children have undergone heart screening on site so far. During 2015-mid 2019, over 160 children with potential heart risks were identified and brought to the government heart hospitals in Kathmandu where the government has provisioned for free valve replacement surgery and required medications and treatment. NHF acts as the link between the affected children and the hospital and help facilitate the services of the hospital.
The Foundation also helps raising funds for non-affording adult heart patients to cover medical expenses: 256 such patients have been supported so far. We have also initiated clinical audit and maintaining registrations of RHD patients. A comprehensive Training Manual for Training of Trainers on RHD has been developed and published in consultations with prominent cardiologists of Nepal.
The RHD programme in NHF has moved a long way. I have mobilized teams of enthusiastic, energetic and competent cardiologists and medical practitioners, occasionally for longer periods too, for screening as well as echocardiographic examinations at site. I am also proud of sharing the experiences and best practices of Nepal within the country and in international heart forums, as well as have been actively involved in institutionalizing NHF with its network extending to all districts of Nepal.