humanitarian mission in Nepal

Margaux, 4th year student, shares with us her humanitarian experience in Nepal.

“Curious and eager for discovery, leaving to the other side of the world to see what is done in my job and possibly contribute to the modification of my practices or bring my knowledge to therapists was for me more than a desire, a need. In addition, my desire to feel useful was fulfilled, which is why I left for Nepal for 18 days this summer. Project Abroad, is an organization that allowed me to carry out my mission after the agreement of the IFMK (whom I thank).

My mission: to integrate a team of physiotherapists in a university hospital in the Chitwan region. There were 3 physiotherapists, they have a physiotherapy room in the hospital, where in the morning people come from the outside to receive the care they need.

Physiotherapists work as in France, on medical prescription. The pathologies encountered in this structure were diverse and varied, but mainly oriented towards rheumatology and traumatology. A physiotherapy school has just opened in Nepal, but until then students had to go to India to be trained. As a result, they have a therapeutic orientation which is both Anglo-Saxon and therefore based on a large number of currents of thought in manual therapy such as Maitland, McKenzie or Mulligan, but they also have a large oriental orientation on Chinese traditional medicine type with the use of suction cups. In the afternoon, the therapists go to the hospital services. Their roles are restricted compared to those seen in France. This is often for the first survey in orthopedics / rheumatology. If necessary the therapist can be asked for its know-how in decluttering techniques.

The main difficulties were the language barrier, which limits interactions with the patient and curiosity in the care of Nepalese families who are trying to replace the therapists to do their own care.

I enjoyed this human experience in volunteering. Going alone allowed me to meet new people, (therapists, host family, other volunteers from all over the world). On the other hand, being a volunteer in the medical field and with this type of organization is quite frustrating as we are more observational than any other thing, that’s why I hope to be able to start my experiment again quickly but in another context in order to feel more useful.