OUCRU Nepal (OUCRU network)
- + 977 1 6213052
Oxford University Clinical Research Unit-Nepal (OUCRU-NP) is hosted by Patan Hospital and the Patan Academy of Health Sciences in Kathmandu Nepal and works in close collaboration with the Nepal Health Research Council at the Nepalese Ministry of Health and Population. Our mission is to build a strong critical mass of young Nepalese clinician scientists who can help build Nepal's scientific and clinical future.
OUCRU-NP was initiated in the summer of 2003 following a visit to Nepal by Professor Jeremy Farrar after an exchange of letters with Dr Buddha Basnyat (Consultant, Patan Hospital) in the New England Journal of Medicine, subsequent to a review article by Professor Farrar and colleagues on typhoid fever.
Since 2003, the research collaboration has evolved and OUCRU-NP has become a respected and integral part of the work of both the Patan Hospital and the Patan Academy of Health Sciences. There has been considerable investment in upgrading the hospital laboratories including Microbiology and now Biochemistry, Haematology and Pathology, in the Clinical Research Unit and in the training of young Nepalese clinicians and scientists. Our main research focus has been on the most common infectious diseases affecting patients at Patan Hospital and in the surrounding areas of Lalipitur. We have a major focus on enteric fever (Typhoid and Paratyphoid) and other causes of febrile illness including typhus, infections of the central nervous system and Hepatitis E. We plan in the future to expand this work to include viral causes of pneumonia, TB, emerging illnesses and other public health priorities in Nepal. High altitude sickness in Nepalese and travellers has also been an interest of this collaboration over the last ten years.
Every year thousands of pilgrims visit religious sites in the mountains of Nepal. Many of these local pilgrims are unaware of the dangers of climbing to high altitudes and many succumb to altitude related illnesses. Some even die in the mountains. The Himalayan Rescue Association, OUCRU Public Engagement and Media for Development worked together with the pilgrim community to create a public health film to inform others of the challenges of these journeys.