Patients suffer as Doti hospitals rely on donors for blood needMost of the hospitals in the district refer patients to hospitals outside the district for lack of blood.
Last year, Saraswati Nepali was taken to the District Hospital in Doti after she suffered from excessive bleeding following an abortion. The District Hospital referred her to Shaileshwori Hospital in Dipayal, citing blood shortage. However, Shaileshwori Hospital too could not manage blood for Nepali. The hospital instead referred her to Dadeldhura Sub Regional Hospital, which in turn sent her to Seti Provincial Hospital in Dhangadhi. Nepali, a resident of Adarsha Rural Municipality in Doti, was pronounced dead on arrival at Seti Provincial Hospital.
Nepali’s case in just an example of how blood shortage has become a pervasive problem in Doti. Such incidents occur on a daily basis as the district does not have a blood transfusion centre.
Yashoda Ojha, a senior auxiliary nurse midwife stationed at Mauwa Health Post, said most people from the district’s rural parts face difficulties in the district headquarters while trying to manage blood during medical emergencies.
“People from remote areas are not familiar with the bazaar area and its people. They don’t know donors and can’t make provisions for blood in time,” Ojha said.
The District Hospital and Shaileshwori Hospital do not have a blood bank. Aai Jung Kunwar, director of Shaileshwori Hospital, said health staff are compelled to refer patients to hospitals outside the district when they can’t manage blood.
“Most of the time, we have to rely on security personnel for blood during emergencies because people here do not willingly come forward to donate blood,” Kunwar said.
Sometimes, hospital staff also request local business people, journalists and civil society leaders to donate blood. But even when blood donors are available, sometimes it’s difficult to match blood groups, said Arjun Balayar, an administrative staff of Sujang Hospital.
“Because of this, we have a hard time catering to patients in need of blood and are compelled to refer them to hospitals outside the district,” said Balayar.
According to the district’s health workers, they need at least 60 to 70 pints of blood every month.
Meanwhile, Doti Red Cross is taking initiatives to establish a blood transfusion centre in Dipalyal, said Khadka Khadka, vice chairman of Doti Red Cross.
“We need modern equipment to store blood for more than 35 days. We are discussing with various stakeholders to manage a fund for the operation of a blood transfusion centre,” said Khadka.
As a temporary solution, Shaileshwori Hospital identified more than 150 blood donors and distributed ID cards to them after conducting a general check-up on Friday.
“We have a record of blood donors with their identified blood groups. We can now contact them and manage blood during an emergency,” said Kunwar.