Madonna in Malawi to visit hospital she has supported


JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Madonna, currently visiting Malawi, is planning to visit the construction of a children’s wing at a hospital that her charity is funding in the southern African country’s largest city, Blantyre.

The pop star has been in Malawi for a week during which she has met with President Peter Mutharika and health minister Peter Kumpalume. Madonna, who has adopted two children from Malawi, is scheduled to visit Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital on Sunday to view the pediatric unit where construction started in May 2015 and which is expected to open in early 2017.

“This new facility is the first pediatric surgery and intensive care unit in any Malawi hospital. It will have an enormous impact on saving the lives of children,” said Madonna, in a statement released to The Associated Press. “In addition to raising the quality and availability of health care, we are also preparing for the future by training more Malawian medical staff in specialized pediatric care.”

The children’s unit will include Malawi’s first pediatric intensive care unit, three operating rooms dedicated to children’s surgery, a day clinic and a 50-bed ward. It will enable Queen Elizabeth hospital to double the number of surgeries for children and will provide critical pre-operative and post-operative care.

Raising Malawi was founded in 2006 to address the poverty and hardship endured by Malawi’s orphans and vulnerable children. Raising Malawi partners with local organizations to provide Malawian children and their caregivers with critical resources including education and medical care.

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