Nepal launches telemedicine service to boost rural health care

PM Madhav Kumar Nepal launched a landmark telemedicine service in the country in an effort to boost health care.

Kathmandu: Nepal Prime Minister Madhav
Kumar Nepal Friday launched a landmark telemedicine service in
the country in an effort to boost health care in the rural
areas with the financial and technical assistance from India.

The SAARC telemedicine centre has been established
with an assistance of Rs 3.05 Crores from the Government of
India under the SAARC telemedicine network project, according
to Indian Embassy here.

Telecommunications Consultants India Limited (TCIL),
a prime engineering and consultancy company under the Ministry
of Communications and Information Technology, is the
implementing agency for this prestigious project.

The assurance for the telemedicine service to Nepal
was conveyed by Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh at the
13th SAARC Summit held in Dhaka in 2005.

The MoU for the implementation of the project between
India and Nepal was signed in June 2009.

Prime Minister Nepal said the service will prove
beneficial for the rural population as it would provide
comfortable and easy excess to health services to the people
living in remote districts.

It has been difficult to take quality and affordable
health services by establishing infrastructure due to
geographical and technical problem, he said inaugurating the
telemedicine service and SAARC telemedicine programme in the

He said the government has been committed to provide
primary health services to the rural population.

Indian Ambassador in Nepal Rakesh Sood, who was also
present on the occasion, said the telemedicine service will
help in providing quality service among the rural people.

"The Government of India is happy to establish the
SAARC telemedicine centre that extends the geographic reach
of medical care and provide people in remote and rural areas
access to medical specialists," said the Indian Ambassador.

The telemedicine service will have the Central
Coordination Desk at Patan Hospital in the capital. The
service has now commenced in district hospitals in 25
mountainous districts across the country.

The programme initiated by the Ministry of Health and
Population is expected to benefit rural people who have been
deprived of quality health services due to geographical and
technical difficulties.

Minister for Health and Population Umakanta Chaudhary
said the programme will be effective to take specialist
service to the rural areas.