MSC and Mercy Ships To Build State-of-the-Art Hospital Vessel

MSC Group, MSC Foundation, and Mercy Ships announced they are working together to build a new hospital ship. Currently in the fundraising stage, the new vessel will offer free medical services and training to thousands of people in Africa.

Mercy Ships sailing at the ocean
(Photo courtesy of Mercy Ships)

Through the MSC Foundation, the parent company, Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC), donated generously to spearhead fundraising for the new vessel. The company will also offer technical advice in the development of the new ship. 

Founder of the MSC Group, Captain Gianluigi Aponte, shared the personal significance of their collaboration. “I spent part of my childhood and early years in the shipping industry in the Horn of Africa, it is a region close to my heart. I saw firsthand the challenges faced by many local communities there and this shaped my conviction that improving the availability of healthcare would bring real and lasting impact for them,” he revealed.

Once completed, the vessel will accommodate 600 crew members and guests. Its onboard hospital will encompass 2 decks that span 7,000 square meters.

Mercy Ships Onboard hospital
(Photo courtesy of Mercy Ships)

It will have a fully equipped laboratory, 6 operating rooms, and innovative training spaces, including a simulation lab. These facilities will enable Mercy Ships to strengthen the surgical capabilities of local healthcare systems.

Since 1978, Mercy Ships has been deploying hospital vessels with volunteer surgeons to some of the most poverty-stricken areas of the world.

Specialized medical teams train local healthcare professionals and perform surgeries like orthopedic corrections for children and maxillofacial reconstructions. It also offers dental and ophthalmology services. 

Mercy Ships currently operates 2 hospital vessels—Africa Mercy, which was converted into a hospital vessel in 2007, and the newer Global Mercy, which entered service in 2018.

Mercy Ships Onboard hospital
(Photo courtesy of Mercy Ships)

The organization has facilitated over 117,000 specialized surgical procedures and impacted over 2 million lives.

Mercy Ships Founder, Don Stephens, acknowledged MSC’s support, saying, “The mission of Mercy Ships to bring Hope and Healing is only possible by the generosity of our partners and volunteer crew, and the provision of God. Today, I am grateful to MSC for their support.”

Though it will be Mercy Ships and MSC’s first time to collaborate on a vessel, MSC has been working with the nonprofit organization since 2011. MSC handles the logistics needs of Mercy Ships, ensuring that its hospital vessels receive the supplies they need through efficient logistics, storage, and inland transportation. 

In the recent past, MSC Foundation has also aided UNICEF’s fundraising activities and the conservation efforts of select universities.

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