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Sierra Leone News: Chinese medical ship to arrive

A Chinese naval medical ship, the Peace Ark, will soon arrive in Sierra Leone. The ship is a Type 920 Hospital Ship, 178 meters with over 400 personnel, from the People’s Liberation Army Navy of China. The Chinese ship will be in Sierra Leone around the middle of September to aid the health sector.
Launched in 2007, the ship serves as a platform to provide a better means to providing quicker humanitarian response to disasters around the world.
The ship has 500 beds, 35 ICUs, 12 operating theatres, and the capacity to accommodate 60 major surgeries a day. Medical personnel on board the ship are expected to treat about 300 people a day and they are estimating to treat about 1,500 people before they leave.
The ship is unarmed and painted white with red crosses to conform to the Geneva Convention criteria for a civilian hospital ship; firing upon it is potentially a war crime under international law.
The naval hospital ship Peace Ark set sail 26th July Wednesday morning from its home port in Zhoushan, east China’s Zhejiang province, for a 155-day friendly visit to eight foreign countries.
The Peace Ark will visit Djibouti, Sierra Leone, Gabon, Republic of Congo, Angola, Mozambique and Tanzania in Africa and also East Timor in Asia. Besides port calls, the Chinese naval hospital ship will carry out the Harmonious Mission 2017, providing humanitarian medical service for local people in these countries.
This is the sixth Harmonious Mission the hospital ship Peace Ark has performed. It set sail from Zhoushan in 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014 and 2015 respectively to perform humanitarian and medical missions.
The Chinese Government, after the Ebola crisis promised to do as much as possible to improve Sierra Leone’s health sector.
Currently, a medical team is working at the 34 Military Hospital to help set up a tropical disease centre in the hope of improving the medical status of the country.
Many scholarships have been given to Sierra Leoneans to study medicine in China and they have stepped up their presence in Sierra Leone by providing enough personnel to work at the Jui hospital.
Wednesday August 09, 2017.

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