The Hospital Out Patient Extention (HOPE) Centre is a facility that supports the hospital onboard the Africa Mercy. Its aim is to provide bed space, thus freeing up beds on-board the AFM, enabling more life-changing surgeries to take place. In order to serve remote populations more effectively, Mercy Ships establishes a HOPE Centre. The HOPE Centre serves as a hospitality center for patients and caregivers to stay before admittance/after discharge from the Africa Mercy hospital.
This is important for patients living in remote areas who are unable to travel to and from their home during outpatient care, including cast and dressing changes. Should any complications arise, the close proximity to the Africa Mercy ensures that patients can be treated quickly and efficiently. Ambulance drivers will transport patients to and from the ship for their outpatient appointments to change bandages, see the doctor, or for physiotherapy sessions.
The HOPE Centre is not a medical facility and is not covered by medical staff. Its purpose is to provide a safe, clean and loving environment for our patients and their caregivers.
Depending on the size of the facility the HOPE Centre is staffed by crew facilitators (5) who supervise the day crew (54) that are responsible for cooking breakfast, cleaning the buildings, serving the food, translation and patient transport.
We hire a local caterer that cooks lunch and dinner under the direction of the ship dietician to provide the most nutritious meals for our patient’s recovery. Some patients stay for a few days while others may stay for several months. The HOPE Centre has the feel of a small community. New patients coming for the first time can see and speak with others that have already had surgery, this helps calm their fears and makes them feel welcome.
At the HOPE Centre we are a family.
Leaving a lasting impact
Boulbinet Health Centre – Conakry, Guinea
- The Ministry of Health and Public Hygiene and Mercy Ships jointly identified Boulbinet Health Center in Conakry to serve as the HOPE Centre for the2018/2019 field service.
- Boulbinet Health Centre is located in the downtown area of the capital city, Conakry, ideally situated near the port.
- In Guinea, Health Centres provide basic medical care, such as maternal health and early childhood development programs.
- Of the 415 Health Centers in Guinea, 60% are categorized as poor condition by the Ministry of Health and Public Hygiene.
- The existing space at Boulbinet is 555m2 including two floors. Renovation work by Mercy Ships included the addition of bathrooms and showers to support the 120-bed spaces planned for the Guinea field service. This includes beds for the patients and caregivers.
- The renovations commenced in June 2018 and were completed ahead of the Africa Mercy’s arrival in August 2018.
- After use as the HOPE Centre, Mercy Ships will return this building to the Ministry of Health and Public Hygiene for their continued use as a community health centre.
- One to two years after the departure of the Africa Mercy, an internal but independent team will return to Guinea to determine the longer-term impact. Here, Mercy Ships will measure success based on the continued use of the facility as a local health clinic.