On February 29th, our Globemed chapter here at Tufts had conference call with Gregory Karelas, the Country Director of Nyaya Health and Mark Arnoldy, the Executive Director. After some difficultly with the internet connection in Nepal, we able to speak with them over our President’s speaker phone. It was grounding to speak with Gregory, who currently works and lives at Bayalpata Hosiptal in Acham, Nepal. He gave a detailed description of the landscape near the Hospital and shared stories from his day-to-day life as the Country Director. He shared some of the challenges, for example how difficult it is to recruit a permanent to doctor work at Bayalpata Hospital, and some of the recent successes of the organization. In the last seven months, the hospital staff has grown by 25% and on the 25th Nyaya broke ground for its new surgical center. He also reported that this year has seen many more patients than the last, and almost double the amount the hospital saw in two years ago.
It was incredibly inspiring to speak with two men so dedicated to gaining health equity in Acham, Nepal. Gregory explained how government officials frequently question Nyaya’s ability to create a sustainable, yet free clinic, and he pointed out that Nyaya has successfully created a free and growing hospital in five years. “We’re really pushing the envelope,” he said.