IN RECENT YEARS the Soviet aid program to the underdeveloped nations has paid increasing attention to medical care and hospital facilities. This is especially true in areas where the Russians feel they are competing with either the Western block countries or Communist China for the attentions and affections of impoverished peoples. Such a situation is found in the Himalayan mountain Kingdom of Nepal, which is a geographical buffer between India and Red China's Tibet. Medical care in this border nation rests unsteadily upon native Hindu Ayurvedic medicine, the remnants of a mystical Tibetan medical system, a series of small Western missionary hospitals, a few Western- or Indiantrained private practitioners, and the hospital and several outlying clinics of the government. Now a new Soviet 50-bed hospital has been added to this amalgam.
Located in the capital city of Kathmandu not far from the King's Palace, the hospital was constructed as the