Tenzingang settlement is situated in the foothills of the Himalayas in north east India. At 45kms from the nearest town along dangerous and landslide prone roads, medical emergencies in the settlement can easily become life-threatening.
Buses in the area are infrequent and taxis are both unreliable and unaffordable. For many years the people of the settlement had no other choice but to rely on these options when they needed to go to hospital. Thankfully, the Tibetan Department of Health, within the Central Tibetan Administration, now provide the settlement with an ambulance which is a life saver to the community; however, they cannot afford to employ a driver.
Thanks to a generous grant received from a trust in 2011, we have been able to provide the Department of Health an annual grant to cover the salary of a designated ambulance driver. Not only has this provided a new job opportunity, the the driver recruited, Lobsand Dhondup, can provide immediate on-site attention; if further treatment is required he drives patients to hospital in the nearest city. Dhondup now plays a vital role in emergency cases, from trauma injures to cardiac arrest, often providing lifesaving support in the nick of time.
Having an ambulance driver in the settlement also means that patients non-life-threatening cases requiring hospital treatment, such as pregnant women and out-patients, can be taken to hospital for regular check-ups. This has helped improve the overall health of the community.
We are delighted the grant received from the trust will cover the ambulance driver’s salary 2017, which gives long-term reassurance to the local community.