Sustainable hospital brings affordable healthcare to Nepal

A rammed earth hospital is bringing affordable healthcare to Nepal. The structure is built primarily from locally sourced materials and is powered by rooftop solar panels.

The new Bayalpata Hospital in Accham, Nepal is expected to provide low-cost, high-quality care to more than 100,000 patients a year from Accham and its six surrounding districts. It features outpatient, inpatient, surgery, antenatal and emergency facilities, as well as pharmacy, radiology and laboratory spaces.

Primarily built from rammed earth, the structure is powered by rooftop solar panels. Passive heating and cooling design strategies were used for climate control, according to an article on inhabitat.com. The campus also includes a new water supply and storage, wastewater treatment facilities and bioswales to manage monsoon-driven erosion.

“We see this project as a model of how rammed earth, and other vernacular materials, can be utilized to create modern architecture,” said Sharon Davis, principal of Sharon Davis Design, who crafted the structure.

“Without local materials, this project may not have been possible because of its incredibly remote location — a 10-hour drive from the nearest regional airport and a three-day drive on narrow, mountainous roads from the nearest manufacturing centers around Kathmandu.”

The project has been dubbed a “model of sustainable rural health”, according to the article. It was made possible through a collaboration between the government of Nepal and NGO Possible Health.

Photo credit: Sharon Davis Design

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