Kathmandu: Runa Jha, a senior doctor from Nepal, was on Saturday named amongst the United Nation's list of top five women to have stood on the front lines in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, a statement issued by the world body said.
Jha, who is the chief pathologist and director of Kathmandu-based National Public Health Laboratory, along with her team is testing roughly 70 samples a day, which arrive at irregular intervals and make for around-the-clock work.
With a title of Leading coronavirus testing efforts in Nepal', the UN Women has also included a brief description on her introduction and duties she has been carrying out.
"Dr Runa Jha is the chief pathologist and director of the only laboratory authorised to conduct COVID-19 testing in Nepal, UN Women, the global body's entity for gender equality and the empowerment of women, mentioned on its website.
The deadly coronavirus, which broke out in China's Hubei province, has so far infected 3,366,714 people worldwide and claimed the lives of 239,345, according to Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Centre.
Nepal is among the nations that has the least cases of coronavirus and has so far reported only 59 confirmed infections.
Jha said staying late at the lab has become the norm.
"Staying late at the lab has become the norm. In addition to the technical work, I also have to manage logistics, such as arranging transportation and food for my team," Dr Jha was quoted as saying by the UN Women website.
Jha said taking care of her team is currently a high priority.
It all began in mid-February when her group was the first to enter a quarantine facility accommodating 175 Nepali students brought home from Wuhan, China.
"My team did not hesitate to volunteer to take samples all of them were ready. We worked the whole night and produced 175 reports the following day," she told the UN Women.
Jha said she does her best to support the workers and boost their morale.
Other women included in the list include Dina Smailova, a leader of the NeMolchi movement from Kazakhstan, Yan Shenglian, a volunteer at a checkpoint in her rural village of Xiaoyao, in China's northwestern Qinghai Province who checks people's body temperature and records their vehicle information.
Ryancia Henry, director of housekeeping in California, USA, who shares helpful messages on social media, and exchanges best practices with others and Amal Al Mahayrah and Hadeel Dabaibeh, UN Women field assistants in Jordan, who provide life-saving services for vulnerable Jordanian women and Syrian refugees were also in the list.