Saturday, May 05, 2007
A former Danish rail ferry converted into a state-of-the-art hospital ship at a cost of $62 million has set sail from England for Africa. The Africa Mercy is the world's largest non-governmental hospital ship, the non-profit Mercy Ships UK said in a release. More than 400 volunteer crew will provide free medical care, capacity building, relief aid and community development program in Liberia.The Africa Mercy has the capacity to conduct 7,000 operations each year, including cataract removal/lens implant, tumor removal, cleft lip and palate reconstruction, orthopedics and obstetric fistula repair. The crew onboard the Africa Mercy are volunteer professionals who pay monthly room and board costs while volunteering. The group said doctors, dentists, nurses, community developers, teachers, builders, cooks, seamen, engineers and many others donate their time and skills to the effort.