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Rina Akther was suffering from a diarrheal illness that rendered her too weak to stand or walk. When she and her mother arrived by rickshaw to the icddr,b hospital in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Rina had to be lifted by the attendant from the rickshaw to a wheelchair.
The wheelchair was one of six that were donated by partner Chariots of Hope, and delivered to the hospital by AmeriCares. In impoverished countries like Bangladesh, many hospitals and health centers do not have an adequate number of wheelchairs, gurneys and other means of patient transport.
“This wheelchair enabled Rina to be taken respectfully and with dignity to a place where she could be treated,” explained Lauren Camp, AmeriCares Senior Associate, of Asia and Eurasia Partnerships.
The wheelchairs also improve hospital efficiency and patient flow across several departments of the hospital. Many diarrheal patients are so dehydrated that they are unable to walk. It is a challenge for hospital attendants to navigate these patients through the intake process from the preliminary check-up through to placement in a bed.
AmeriCares has partnered with icddr,b since 2011, providing more than $2 million in aid to the hospital and research facility, renowned for its low-cost solutions to health care problems such as cholera and other diarrheal diseases in developing countries. In urban and rural Bangladesh, icddr,b serves communities in extreme poverty, where millions live without access to adequate healthcare or livesaving medicines.
Read more about our work in Bangladesh here.
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