PESHAWAR, July 31: A 70-bed hospital set up in a village near Peshawar in 1998 by a volunteer doctor from Japan provides treatment to patients of leprosy and epilepsy and those that are handicapped.

Dr Tetsu Nakamura, who is a neurosurgeon and has been working in the health sector in Pakistan and Afghanistan for the last 18 years, was among the seven individuals nominated for the prestigious Ramon Magsaysay Award.

The hospital established in the Pawaka village on the outskirts of the provincial metropolis is manned by some 30 staff members.

“The Pak-Kai Medical Services hospital is much better than those functioning in the public sector in our area, because the fee is only Rs20 and we get the medicines for free here,” a woman from Sarband told Dawn. For the last 18 years,

Dr Nakamura, under whose tutelage this hospital is functioning, has also been a recipient of Okinawa Peace Award.

A pioneer of the Pak-Kai medical services in Pakistan, he also runs three health clinics at Dara-i-Noor near Kunar and other eastern parts of Afghanistan to provide medical facilities to patients. Mobile medical teams also go to the district Chitral (Lasht and Yar Khoon) and Dobair Bala in Kohistan every month.

At present, his attention is focused on providing water in the drought-stricken areas of Afghanistan, the PMS administrator said.

A canal project was launched six months ago near River Kunar in Afghanistan. An 11-km-long canal would be constructed to supply water to Dara-i-Noor. The canal would irrigate areas lying between Ziari Baba and Budyalay. It would also provide employment opportunities to the local people, he added.

Two tubewells were installed near Torkham border and five irrigation wells were dug in eastern Afghanistan.