Skip to main content
MPH

Priyankar Bahadur Chand

Lalitpur, Nepal

Democratizing Health Policy

As a student of medical anthropology and global health at Yale University, Priyankar Chand started his research on illness narratives of sickle cell disease in his home country of Nepal, work that pushed him to return home.

After a year in the district of Achham, managing a public-private hospital, Chand helped co-found Sickle Cell Nepal, the first patient-led nonprofit aimed at improving awareness and policies for the disease in the country.

“Through decades of political struggle and sacrifices for equity in Nepali society, health care is now guaranteed as a constitutional right, but clearly these rights aren’t being met. The system is broken—but we need more people to care and advocate for health reforms. Through collaboration, dialogue, and science we can make it better.”

Although sickle cell can be diagnosed shortly after birth and early treatments can improve lives, many health care providers in Nepal had never even heard of it.

To help improve care for patients, he and his colleagues successfully lobbied Nepal’s newly formed state governments to supply free diagnoses and essential medicines, and set up a public sickle cell and thalassemia center.

In his MPH program, Chand plans to continue an interdisciplinary study on how advocacy, public institutions, and patient experiences can catalyze improvements in health systems, especially for vulnerable groups.

“Through decades of political struggle and sacrifices for equity in Nepali society, health care is now guaranteed as a constitutional right, but clearly these rights aren’t being met,” he says. “The system is broken—but we need more people to care and advocate for health reforms. Through collaboration, dialogue, and science we can make it better.”

Profile photo of Priyankar Bahadur Chand

FROM
Lalitpur, Nepal

DEGREES
BA, Anthropology and Global Affairs, Yale University, 2016

PURSUING
MPH