11 Oct Mercy Ships signs agreement to deliver free, life-changing surgeries in Liberia
We are delighted to announce that we have recently signed a protocol agreement with the Republic of Liberia, sealing a commitment that will bring life-changing medical care to the people of this nation in 2021.
The Africa Mercy will dock in Monrovia for 10 months, providing free, life-changing surgeries for thousands of people.
Upon arrival in Liberia, we will bring more than 400 volunteer doctors, specialists, nurses and other talent from around the world who serve on its hospital ship. The team will make investments to improve local healthcare facilities and to provide continuing education for local professionals, mentoring in such fields as maxillofacial surgery techniques, orthopaedic trauma, nursing, paediatric anaesthesia and infection control. The partnership will focus on improving quality of care and communication.
Mercy Ships has directly impacted more than 2.7 million people in its 40-year history. It will serve in Liberia for the fifth time, returning for the first time since 2008.
“Mercy Ships has a strong foundation of work with our people and has provided tremendous resources to our healthcare system,” said Dr. Wilhelmina Jallah, Liberia’s minister of health. “What we have seen, what we have experienced, is incredible beyond what I can speak to. As we work to strengthen the care we deliver, we are grateful to Mercy Ships for the investment of resources, training and genuine concern for the well-being of our people.”
In its four previous trips to Liberia, Mercy Ships provided a total of more than 6,500 life-changing and lifesaving surgeries to the country’s citizens and provided more than 16,000 patients with free dental care and basic oral health education. Additionally, more than 60 healthcare professionals (surgeons, nurses, anaesthesia providers, laboratory technicians, biomedical technicians and others) received training, and the nonprofit constructed a medical clinic and a dental clinic.
“We are excited to confirm our return to Liberia, which will be our fifth field service working in this nation and our first since the Ebola crisis,” said Donovan Palmer, CEO of Mercy Ships. “Now that our protocol is signed, we begin the important process of assessing the needs that exist. Together, we will deliver hope and healing to people in tremendous need of care.”
Liberia’s population of 4.58 million people continues to recover from the direct and indirect disruption to healthcare services during the two-year Ebola epidemic that began in 2014. The disease ravaged the nation and resulted in more than 30,000 reported cases and 11,000 deaths throughout Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, where Mercy Ships is currently serving.
Liberia ranks 181st among 189 countries and territories on the World Health Organisation’s Human Development Index, which Mercy Ships uses to assess areas of need for service.
All Mercy Ships services are provided free of charge, thanks to donors around the world who are passionate in their support of the volunteer professionals onboard the Africa Mercy.
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