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Life at Norlha Blog

Kangtsa Medical College

Kangtsa is a small monastery situated on the border between Zorge and Karkya. Along with Shakyong and Takster, it is among the oldest Gelukpa monasteries in Amdo. Founded by the 4th Panchen Lama’s disciple Ngomar Ritropa, it remained an independent institution for some time, then went under the administration of Labrang in the late 18th century and remains connected to its medical college to this day.

Kangsta was built flanking a hill looking over a beautiful valley full of juniper trees. Its medical college is an active part of the monastery. Tibetan monk doctors, trained at Labrang, maintain a clinic and a pharmacy of herbal medications made from plants collected every summer on the pasture. Five years ago a separate dispensary was built below the monastery to increase its access for the local population.