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Hospital ship-shape

Published 1st December, 2011 by Neil Nixon

Hospital ship-shape

Mercy Ships, the international charity that provides free medical care and humanitarian aid to some of the world’s poorest people, has received a donation of cleaning and water waste treatment products from Hepburn Bio Care. Mercy Ships runs the world’s largest charity hospital ship, the Africa Mercy, which is currently in field service in Sierra Leone.

Hepburn Bio Care produces environmentally friendly cleaning materials which can be used on areas of the vessel from deck to interiors, eliminating odours, reducing solids, preventing viral outbreaks and minimising the impact of overboard chemical and waste discharge while helping to create a safer working environment on board. The group has been supplying products to Mercy Ships free of charge since 2009 and has recently donated a new round of cleaning products, including bottles and tops.

The Africa Mercy has been converted from a Danish rail ferry to a state-of-the-art hospital ship, with six operating theatres, X-ray facilities and CT scanner, a pharmacy and a laboratory. There is capacity for 78 in-patients with four wards and a small intensive care unit as well as housing up to 450 volunteers. It is staffed by an international crew of dedicated volunteers from over 40 nations ranging from seamen, engineers, surgeons, doctors and nurses who give up their time to help save the lives of others.

Margaret Hepburn, CEO of Hepburn Bio Care, said: “We are proud to continue to donate to the charity Mercy Ships and hope that these products will help it continue its good work in West Africa. I am thrilled that we are able to support such a worthy cause.”

Judy Polkinhorn, executive director of Mercy Ships UK, said: “We are grateful for the continuing generosity of Hepburn Bio Care. Its donations have helped Mercy Ships continue to provide a high quality hospital environment, with the satisfaction of knowing materials and rooms are cleaned with products that are low in toxicity and are safer to use than traditional chemicals. Kind donations such as these are vital in ensuring Mercy Ships can continue to help and provide care to those who have little or no access to surgical and medical help.”

Over the last 30 years, Mercy Ships has worked in more than 70 countries providing services valued at £530 million and impacting about 2.9million people. The international charity has treated more than 520,000 people in village medical and dental clinics, performed more than 56,000 surgeries and completed more than 1000 community development projects focusing on water and sanitation, education, infrastructure development and agriculture.

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