Neten Dorji | Trashigang

With the arrival of four specialists in Trashigang dzongkhag hospital, the people of four eastern dzongkhags will no longer have to go to Thimphu and Mongar to avail health services.

Trashigang hospital received one gynaecologist, paediatrician, surgeon, and medical specialist a year ago. It further eases the pressure on Mongar Regional Hospital and Jigme Dorji Wangchuck National Referral Hospital. 

Trashigang dzongkhag requires four specialist doctors given its population size, proximity to the nearest referral point, presence of other institutions and poverty rate, among others. The hospital receives patients from Trashiyangtse, Mongar, and Pemagatshel.

“Without specialists, we had to go to Mongar and Thimphu for advanced medical services,” said a villager, Sonam Zangmo, from Dramistse.

A patient, Ugyen, said that it was difficult to get appointments in Thimphu and sometimes machines aren’t working. “For many patients like us, it is expensive to go to Thimphu for the services.”

A mother of three, Pema Yangzom, said she gave birth to her third child in the hospital. “I am extremely grateful to the government for bringing specialists to the hospital. I would have had to go to Mongar otherwise.”

She said that without specialists like gynaecologists, many mothers lost their babies when they were referred to other dzongkhags because of complications.

“When someone comes in with a fracture of bones, we refer to Mongar for minor surgery,” a health official said.

Dzongkhag Senior Health Officer, Lobzang Tshering, said: “ The dzongkhag administration is planning to propose the extension of the hospital’s next five-year plan. Currently, we have adjusted spaces for specialists.”