Ekwendeni Mission Hospital Ekwendeni, Malawi
Founded in 1889 by Dr Walter Elmslie from Aberdeen, Ekwendeni Hospital is a general hospital with 230-bed capacity owned by CCAP Synod of Livingstonia since 1962. It serves a catchment area of 45,000 and has a wider referral area of 120,000. The hospital employs 170 staff and sees over 21,000 out-patients every year, of which over 7,000 are usually admitted. It accommodates 3,000 births a year. In addition, there is a nutrition rehabilitation unit, ophthalmology unit and dental surgery and a busy laboratory, conducting nearly 27,000 tests every year.
There is a strong and active Primary Healthcare Department, based on community participation. This organises maternal and child health clinics (18,000 vaccinations a year), family planning, water and sanitation projects, rural housing, community grain banks, women’s savings and credit schemes, AIDS and malaria control programmes, a fertiliser revolving fund and a micro-nutrient programme.
The conditions in the hospital are quite poor, most of the equipment has been donated from hospitals in the western world and there is a very limited range of drugs. The hospital is located in the small village of Ekwendeni, and is only a short bus journey from the larger town Mzuzu where there is internet access, a larger range of shops and the main bus station. Buses regularly leave for destinations all over Malawi including Nkhata Bay, the beautiful lakeside resort approximately an hour away.