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KANTI CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL, KATHMANDU, NEPAL

  • PROFILE 1
  • PROFILE 2

THE LOGISTICS

Hospital Size:

Approx. 300 beds.

Specialities Available:

Paediatric Medicine and Surgery, Neonatalogy/Intensive Care, Oncology, Cardiology, Neurology.

Speciality/Subspecialty Chosen:

General Paediatric Medicine. The consultant on our team had a special interest in neurology.

Hospital Contact:

Bishop Joshi
bjoshi@wlink.com.np
jyorat@hotmail.com

Institute of Child Health Secretariat
Kanti Children's Hospital
PO Box: 2664
Maharajgunj
Kathmandu 3
Nepal

N.B. This is the address on the website, I haven't tried it so can't guarantee it works!

Website: http://www.kantichildrenhospital.gov.np

Number of students taken/possible to take:

We went as a group of three, but they'd take a larger group.

Why did you choose this elective?

We wanted to go somewhere a bit different, and were interested in paeds. The hospital was recommended to us by students who'd gone a few years before us.

When is the best time to go?

We went in July which is monsoon season – i.e. not the best time, but probably the only realistic time for students from this part of the world doing an elective. The rain wasn't constant and we didn't find it much of a problem (we're from Ireland after all!). As it was low season there weren't too many other tourists, which is a pro or a con depending on what you're looking for, but prices are lower and it's easier to bargain for accommodation, etc.

When did you go?

See Above.

How to sort accommodation:

We booked our first night online from Ireland and sorted the rest when we got there so that we could see it and negotiate a price before committing. We stayed in the Kathmandu Guest House which is really centrally located, safe, comfortable etc. and still reasonably priced; we paid approx. 7 EURO a night, each. Cheaper options are also available. Lonely Planet is indispensable!

How much was your flight? What was your route?

Roughly 650 EURO from Heathrow (Jet Airways).

Did you get M.O.V.E. funding? If so, how much (group figure)?

Yes, 1,812 EURO.

THE SERIOUS STUFF

Procedures observed:

Bone marrow biopsy, and lumbar puncture.

Clinical Skills Performed:

We did examinations but not 'skills' in the sense of cannulation, etc. We hadn't had any clinical skills training in paediatrics at the time of our elective so didn't feel it was appropriate to request we perform these procedures on young children who didn't understand English.

Common Cases Observed:

Pneumonia, TB, infectious hepatitis, abdo pain, burns, seizures, developmental delay, leukaemias, aplastic anaemia, Guillain Barré syndrome. We also saw some rare conditions (Fanconi anaemia, osteopetrosis). Medicine is less specialized than in Ireland so ward rounds encompassed a wide variety of cases.

Relative to an average rotation in Ireland, with an average rotation rated at 7.5/10, how academically challenging did you find this elective:

Probably 7.5 – it was academically comparable, but the days were shorter than on a typical rotation at home.

Pros about the elective (only related to training):

Our consultant was very good for bedside teaching and would question and teach her interns and SHOs on ward rounds (through English) which we benefitted from.

Cons about the elective (only related to training):

I didn't find it a disadvantage, but as the consultants are excellent and the hospital didn't appear short-staffed, students aren't given responsibility or expected to help out or be very 'hands-on' as I believe is the case in some clinics in developing countries, so if expectations were for that type of an elective people could be disappointed.

How many hours per week were you working in the hospital (not including study hours) per week?

It's up to the student, the teams work 7 days a week and are flexible about you coming and going, travelling at weekends, etc. There are ward rounds every morning and various clinics in the afternoons.

Student-to-Doctor ratio with regards to training:

The 3 of us stayed with one consultant and her team of 2 SHOs and 3-4 interns. It is generally the consultants who teach students rather than other team members.

Describe an average day on rotation:

Morning ward rounds at 9a or 10a, clinics in the afternoon.

THE FUN STUFF

On your day off, you would:

Visit sites in Kathmandu, do yoga lessons, enjoy the huge variety of restaurants on offer! We also had the chance to go para-gliding and on an elephant safari, and other activities such as white-water rafting, bungee jumping, trekking, cookery courses, etc.

Places in the area you visited:

Pokhara and Chitwan National Park.

Places in the area you wish you visited if you had more time:

Maybe more of the Kathmandu valley and Himalayas, though we probably would have tried to cross the border and visit Tibet or Bhutan had we had enough time.

Cost of Local Beer (nil if there is no alcohol served in the country):

Cheap.

Approximate cost of Cab/Sharetaxi/Matatu/DaliDali/Autorickshaw from pub/hangout:

We stayed in the centre so restaurants/pubs/supermarket/bakeries etc were literally around the corner. The hospital was about 15-20 mins away and that cost 1.50 EURO total in a taxi each way.

Did you hang out mostly with a local crowd or the ex-pat crowd?

Mostly other international students.

OVERALL

Overall Rating:

9/10

Would you recommend this to future students?

Yes, definitely.

Recommended for those interested in the following specialities:

Paediatrics and any subspecialities of it, or even general adult medicine. The hospital also has a surgical unit but we weren't placed on a surgical team so I can't comment on this. We were given the impression they didn't want students in theatre, but it would be worth clarifying this in advance.

EXTRA COMMENTS BY THE AUTHOR:

-N/A-

THE LOGISTICS

Hospital Size:

Around 300 beds.

Specialities Available:

Specialties included paediatric medicine and surgery, neonatology / intensive care, oncology, cardiology, neurology, urology, and a special burns unit.

Speciality/Subspecialty Chosen:

General pediatric medicine. The consultant we were assigned to had a special interest in neurology.

Hospital Contact:

Bishop Joshi
bjoshi@wlink.com.np
jyorat@hotmail.com

Institute of Child Health Secretariat
Kanti Children's Hospital
PO Box: 2664
Maharajgunj
Kathmandu 3
Nepal

Website: http://www.kantichildrenhospital.gov.np

Number of students taken/possible to take:

We went as a group of 3. But there were many other groups doing electives at the hospital ranging in numbers from 11 to 1.

Why did you choose this elective?

Didn't want to go to Africa and this was recommended by one of the older students which one of the girls had been talking to at MedBall. Also we all liked the idea of specializing in paediatrics.

When is the best time to go?

We went in July. This is low season / Monsoon season in Nepal but makes it the cheapest time to go. The rain wasn't too bad at all and never stopped us from doing things we had planned to do.

When did you go?

See Above.

How to sort accommodation:

We sorted out our accommodation when we arrived as we were able to bargain prices once we got there and get the best location. We stayed in the Kathmandu Guest house which is the centre of Thamel which had 24-hour security and double-locked safe, a fan, hot showers and clean rooms and paid 7 EURO each a night and we were within walking distance of everything. There were many other guest houses within the area for similar prices.

How much was your flight? What was your route?

We booked a multicity trip and met up with other students in Tanzania afterwards and then flew home. Overall flights with Qatar were around 1000 EURO for everything London to Nepal, Nepal to Tanzania, Tanzania to London. One of the others just went to Nepal and paid around 650 EURO (return).

Did you get M.O.V.E. funding? If so, how much (group figure)?

Yes, 1812 EURO.

THE SERIOUS STUFF

Procedures observed:

Bone Marrow Biopsy, Lumbar Puncture.

Clinical Skills Performed:

We did lots of examinations but not much clinical skills as we had no training in paediatric clinical skills and didn't feel it was fair to be asking extremely ill children if we could practice on them.

Common Cases Observed:

Pneumonia, TB, GBS, Leukemia, Asthma, Enteric Fever, Ectodermal Dysplasia, ITP, Nephrotic Syndrome, Infective Hepatitis, Osteopetrosis , Rheumatic Fever, Fanconi Anaemia, HSV encephalitis, Meningitis, SLE, septic arthritis, CMV in an neonate, childhood epilepsy, infantile spasms, developmental delay, CF, Cerebral Palsy.
As this was the only public paediatric hospital in Nepal the diseases we saw were extremely varied.

Relative to an average rotation in Ireland, with an average rotation rated at 7.5/10, how academically challenging did you find this elective:

7.5/10. Days were typically shorter than your average Trinity rotation.

Pros about the elective (only related to training):

Each patient was presented daily by an SHO in English. The consultant would ask a lot of questions and there was a massive emphasis put on basic clinical examinations due to the lack of resources.

Cons about the elective (only related to training):

People who are looking for a more hands-on approach would be disappointed as there are plenty of staff in the hospital to do basic procedures.

How many hours per week were you working in the hospital (not including study hours) per week?

It's really up to the individual. The team worked 7 days a week, with ward rounds daily. Outpatients was every Tuesday and Sunday and between the team they could see over 300 patients. There was a specialist neurology outpatient clinic two afternoons a week. The team was very flexible about letting us take weekends off to travel around Nepal.

Student-to-Doctor ratio with regards to training:

The team was composed of 2 SHOs, 3 interns and the consultant. The 3 of us stayed with this team for our entire rotation. But if we had wanted to be separated individually to different teams this wouldn't have been an issue. The Consultant did most of the teaching rather than the other doctors.

Describe an average day on rotation:

Morning ward rounds at 9a or 10a. Clinics in the afternoon.

THE FUN STUFF

On your day off, you would:

Visit all the historical sites in Kathmandu, Yoga classes, lots of restaurants. We also did paragliding, pedal-boating, small hill walks, elephant safaris and elephant baths, jungle trek, rafting and lots, lots more. There was never a boring day in Nepal.

Places in the area you visited:

Pokhara and Chitwan National Park

Places in the area you wish you visited if you had more time:

We probably would have tried to cross the border to Tibet, Bhutan or India if we had more time.

Cost of Local Beer (nil if there is no alcohol served in the country):

Everything is really cheap.

Approximate cost of Cab/Sharetaxi/Matatu/DaliDali/Autorickshaw from pub/hangout:

We walked almost everywhere but we did take a taxi to the hospital which was a 15 minute drive and cost 1.50 EURO.

Did you hang out mostly with a local crowd or the ex-pat crowd?

Mostly other international students.

OVERALL

Overall Rating:

10/10

Would you recommend this to future students?

YES!!!

Recommended for those interested in the following specialities:

Paediatrics

EXTRA COMMENTS BY THE AUTHOR:

-N/A-

 

 

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