Before going for the Trek & Treat Campaign (Eye Health Screening Camp in remote areas of Nepal) I had some idea about what I would be seeing in those remote villages of Nepal. I was already aware of the fact that many remote places of Nepal are still deprived of basic health care services. I knew that the things we keep hearing on radio and televisions about people dying without getting a mere ORS solutions (Jeevan Jal) is still prevalent in many of such rural areas of Nepal. I also knew that there are many people whose blindness that can be prevented are still living their life in darkness. I always knew that there are people in those remote areas who does not have enough money to come to the city for their treatment. But is knowing things just enough?? Can we do something better than just knowing things?
After 5 hours of hiking from RARA Lake we reached Khatyad, a remote village of Mugu District. The only means of transportation were the mules and there were no signs of proper health care centers around. We were trekking from RARA to Khaptad and Khatyad was on our way of the trekking route. We were prepared with our basic screening instruments and medicines to carry out our first screening camp at Khatyad and it was during our screening camp that I really felt upset about the health care system of our country about which I already knew before. We saw a 28 days old child who had injury in her left eye and needed immediate surgical intervention. Though the treatment of such cases are usually done at free of cost, the parents did not have enough money even to travel to the city. Sadly, the child passed away the next day without proper treatment facility in the village. Knowing things and seeing things were now completely two different things for me. After what I experienced being in that village for a couple of days made me realize that if I do not take things seriously now and work harder to solve this problem (at least the problem of eye health care service from my side) then I would be no different than other people who just know things but do nothing.
We now have dreamt of making Trek & Treat a nationwide health care campaign to reach those people who needs us. To make this happen we need help from everyone around us. Some of us here are Optometrists, Ophthalmologists, Physiotherapists, Cardiologists, Writers, Photographers, Content Creators, Bloggers, Drivers, etc, etc. If we can all just spare about couple of days from our busy schedule and work together to help those in need then we can indeed make places like Khatyad a better place with better facilities.
Changes come from ourselves. Please be the change and lead others to make the change.