Sustainable Development Goal 3: Ensure healthy lives and promoting well-being for all at all ages—which is targeted to be achieved by all countries across the world by 2030—has a central focus on health and is underpinned by 13 targets.
Nepal’s constitution mandates basic healthcare services as a fundamental right of the people and further stipulates its free and accessible provision for all. National Health Policy 2071 also aspires to promote, preserve, improve, and rehabilitate the health of the people by addressing existing and emerging challenges. The Policy also envisions universal health coverage and strategies to guide its implementation.
Although the human rights-based approach has been integrated into many policies, plans, and programs; however, there are myriad challenges in realizing basic healthcare services as a fundamental human right. Most rural health facilities lack essential medicine, equipment, and personnel. Poor transportation links and costly private healthcare services are other major factors depriving rural communities from accessing health care services.
The major goal of GNI Nepal’s health program is to enhance the health-seeking behavior of community members.
I. Health Check-up Service
The overall objective is to increase access of sponsored children and their families to healthcare services and ensuring medical examination of all sponsored children at least once a year. We conduct health camps—the most widely relied upon mode of health examination and consultation for reaching out to the people at the extremities of mainstream socio-economic development—in Mugu and Humla districts. Primary targets are sponsored children and medicines are given to them and other camp attendees free-of-cost.
Since 2017, our health check-up service has shifted from health camps to check-up through local health facilities in ten working districts: Kathmandu, Lalitpur, Kaski, Myagdi, Parbat, Doti, Darchula, Bajura, Gorkha, Kailali, and Bardiya. Through counseling and awareness-raising of the communities about periodic health check-up, healthy behavior, various health issues, and available government healthcare services, we seek to increase the utilization of prevailing healthcare services in the communities we serve.
II. Health System Strengthening
Overall objective is to increase access to and strengthen the capacity of the public health system. GNI Nepal strives to ensure improved health system performance and progressive adoption of universal health coverage among the vulnerable. We focus on health services delivery, health commodities (equipment, medicines, and infrastructure), and health workforce. Our work strengthens the performance and interconnectedness of these three building blocks of the health system. We also support in enhancing health workforce capacity so that they can adapt to changing health care landscape and respond to the needs of the communities.
III. Health education and capacity building
Major objective is to enhance knowledge of and attitude towards health-seeking behavior, safe hygiene and sanitation practices. For economically disadvantaged areas we serve, preventive measures are far better than costly health care remedies and community health education is key to improving health conditions. We implement health education programs that cover the most relevant and common health issues in such areas.
IV. Critical Situation Treatment Support
The objective is to save the lives of sponsored children from critical medical situations and strengthen the referral system of the Government of Nepal. Critical Situation Treatment Support Program provides financial support to sponsored children in the event of an illness or accidental injury.