Nepal Earthquake: ”I am afraid I will lose my baby”

Nepal Earthquake: ”I am afraid I will lose my baby”

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Mahendra Laxmi Sharma

Ever since the earthquake Yam worries about losing her unborn child

Yam, 32 years old, lives in one of the remote villages in Lamjung, a five hour drive from the capital of Kathmandu. She is pregnant with her fourth child. Her house has been completely damaged and she is now sleeping outside on a field. CARE provided her with tarpaulin, which is currently the roof over her family’s heads. Her crops and belongings are buried under the rubble of her collapsed house. Her family depends on the wage she and her husband earn when working on the field. She does not have a farm of her own. Ever since the earthquake and with all the aftershocks, she is not feeling well. She went to a private hospital for check-up. The hospital provided her with free medical services.  They told her that she has anaemia. “I am very worried, because my baby’s heart does not beat normally,” says Yam. The doctor advised her to eat healthy, drink a lot and visit the hospital again after two months. If her health condition does not improve by then, the doctors might have to do an induced miscarriage.  “I feel very weak and dizzy. I am losing my appetite. I am so worried about my child, but I cannot stop worrying about the possibility of yet another earthquake either,” Yam says. 

As she is not earning an income at the moment, she and her family are dependent on food provided by the government and aid organization such as CARE. There are thousands of pregnant women in Nepal who are going through similar traumatic experiences after the earthquake. CARE is particularly concerned about the 14,000 women who are expected to give birth in Nepal over the next month. An estimated 2,000 of them are at risk of experiencing complications that require emergency obstetric care. However, hundreds of health facilities have been damaged or destroyed. Women have to walk even longer and further to get the care they need. CARE is distributing health kits that include essential medicines and supplies for birthing attendants to handle medical complications during delivery. Additionally, CARE is distributing water purification to provide clean water, particularly for pregnant women and children who are more susceptible to water-borne illness such as diarrhea. 

“We don’t know how to make a living now. We cannot continue our work on the field and there are no other job opportunities in my village right now. I am glad we received hygiene kits and shelter kits from CARE. At least we have something to get us started with again.”