Frontline Caregivers by Nitu Ghale

Photo: Nitu Ghale/

Ram Karan Thakur’s daughter-in-law Devika was getting treatment in Mirchaya Hospital in Siraha for two days but the doctors could not diagnose her ailment.

They referred her to Patan Hospital in Lalitpur. Thakur booked an ambulance and he, Devika, and his four-month-old granddaughter made their way to Kathmandu. There was no one at Siraha to look after the baby. So the three spent 24 days at the hospital. Thakur and the baby slept in the guest area of the hospital, as Devika recovered. Each morning Thakur took his granddaughter out for a walk. The baby slept on his chest. At mealtimes, he mixed powdered milk and porridge, fed her, changed her diapers, and made sure she was comfortable. “It is painful the baby had to be dragged to Kathmandu with us,” said Thakur “A hospital with sick people is not a safe place for a baby.”

Thakur borrowed Rs. 25,000 for this trip, but the amount was spent paying the ambulance and hospital. Paying for other expenses and finding nutritious food for the baby has been a challenge. Fortunately, Devika’s mother was able to come and take the baby back home when the lockdown ended. Meanwhile, Thakur has decided to stay with Devika and take care of her as long as the doctors tell him to.

Text and Photos: Nitu Ghale @eastern_keen
Edit: Mallika Aryal @mikaness

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