Mercy Ships

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by Mercy Ships's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Mercy Ships is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles

www.mercyships.org.uk

BEST PRACTICE SPONSOR 2020
11MERCY SHIPS |
HEALTH & SOCIAL WORK
Lea Milligan, Executive Director
of Mercy Ships UK
The
Africa Mercy
, the
world’s largest charity-run
hospital ship
Mercy Ships is a world-leading surgical charity with a
creative approach to healthcare provision and training. It
operates the largest charity-run hospital ship in the world,
the
Africa Mercy
, which delivers free, safe medical care to countries
across West Africa. Partnering with ministries of health in each
nation, Mercy Ships is a guest of the government and committed
to meeting the needs of every nation it serves. Executive Director
Lea Milligan tells
The Parliamentary Review
more.
The Lancet Commission on Global Surgery identifies that more than 18 million
people die each year from a lack of safe surgery. That is more than three times the
annual number of people who die from HIV, malaria and tuberculosis combined.
Our floating hospital is staffed almost entirely by volunteers, who give their
expertise for free to help treat conditions that are often unheard of in the Western
world. This helps ensure that the support of our donors goes as far as possible.
Transforming lives
We take a multi-pronged approach to improve healthcare systems in the countries we
partner with. We reduce the immediate backlog of surgical patients through direct
surgical provision onboard a hospital ship, while mentoring and training local healthcare
professionals and renovating nearby facilities. We work towards the sustainable long-
term improvement of medical infrastructure partnering with a nation for up to five years.
Our incredible volunteers transform lives – one recent story stands out. When
we returned to Guinea in 2018 our screening and assessment team only found
six cases of cleft lip and palate. Normally we would expect to find over 400 at
FACTS ABOUT
MERCY SHIPS UK
»UK Executive Director:
LeaMilligan
»Founded in 1978
»Based in Stevenage
»Services: Teaching hospital
ship
»No. of employees: 20 full-time
»Over 100,000 surgical
procedures performed
»Over 42,250 professionals
trained
»Currently serving in Senegal
Mercy Ships
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
12 | MERCY SHIPS
a screening day. After investment
in training and facilities during our
last visit six years ago, a local medic,
DrKorumba, had carried out over 300
surgeries in the last year alone. His
work with a local team he has trained
is fast meaning that we will be able to
focus on other conditions in the area
and expand our trainingprogrammes.
This is exactly the future that we and
our host nations are working towards
together: a day when we see diseases
of poverty eradicated, and local
services and clinicians empowered to
care for their communities without our
support. Since 1978, we have visited
56 countries. We have performed
over 100,000 life-changing surgical
procedures and taught over 239,000
people about basic healthcare. We
have also trained over 42,250 local
professionals in their area of expertise.
When our hospital ship leaves
port, it leaves stronger healthcare
infrastructure in its wake. Mercy Ships
leave a legacy of lasting change.
Striving for more
Over 20 per cent of our training and
mentoring is delivered by Africans who
have been trained by us to ensure that
context and culture are embedded in
all we do. Each year, 100 individuals
from the countries we serve stand
alongside us and passionately inspire
their own governments to be part of
the change.
Mercy Ships will always strive to do
more and do it better than ever before.
The continent of Africa is a flourishing
and changing landscape, and yet
abject poverty is still rife. While the
number of those living on less than $2
a day has halved globally in the last
20 years, in sub-Saharan Africa, the
number has barely changed. So, while
world poverty has halved, we need
to redouble the surgical and training
capacity of our fleet to serve Africa.
In 2014, we commissioned the
construction of the world’s first
purpose-built civilian hospital ship.
Sarah Kwok, a British
volunteer anaesthetist,
carries Saliou up the
gangway for his cleft lip
surgery
Our incredible
volunteers
transform
lives
13MERCY SHIPS |
HEALTH & SOCIAL WORK
Thehull has now been completed. Our
next step is to turn the basic structure
into a fully functional, state of the art,
mobile hospital – two and a half times
bigger than any ship we have ever run
before. The
Global Mercy
will increase
our surgical and teaching capacity
from 8,500 operations to more than
20,000 operations per year as we
run it alongside our current ship, the
Africa Mercy
. Our training capacity
will double to over 2,800 African
professionals a year, not to mention
it will enable us to operate in two
countries simultaneously.
The design of the new ship
incorporates 40 years of our learning,
crew feedback and expert input in
its design. Bespoke workspaces will
incorporate the latest technology for
crew safety and security, and the ship
will provide accommodation for 641
people, including the crew and all
medical staff onboard as well as an
expanded patient ward.
Delivering for the future
We have the potential, within a
generation, to transform the healthcare
narrative in Africa by delivering
world-class service in partnership with
nations passionate about seeing their
healthcare improved. Thanks to our
family of partners and supporters,
we have been able to help patients
receive surgery that has changed their
lives forever, freeing them to embrace
their future. We want this for more
people – and the funding we have
recently secured from the Department
for International Development will only
support us in achieving this aim.
Our ships provide training platforms,
observation facilities and classrooms
onboard, meaning we can build for the
future by providing vital training for
medical professionals, while we work
to upgrade the local healthcare facilities
and transform the lives of people
suffering from diseases ofpoverty.
The UK’s commitment to deliver 0.7
per cent of GDP to international aid is
an essential element in this mix. At a
time when the public is more alive than
ever to the debate of charity starting
at home or abroad, charity versus
partnership and the best methods of
efficient, effective and safe delivery,
Mercy Ships is proud to step up to the
challenge of serving the needs of West
Africa, learning from its partners every
step of the way.
Mercy Ships
will always
strive to do
more and do
it better than
ever before
Saliou pictured blowing
bubbles with two
volunteers after his
surgery
BEST PRACTICE SPONSOR 2020
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
12 | MERCY SHIPS
a screening day. After investment
in training and facilities during our
last visit six years ago, a local medic,
DrKorumba, had carried out over 300
surgeries in the last year alone. His
work with a local team he has trained
is fast meaning that we will be able to
focus on other conditions in the area
and expand our trainingprogrammes.
This is exactly the future that we and
our host nations are working towards
together: a day when we see diseases
of poverty eradicated, and local
services and clinicians empowered to
care for their communities without our
support. Since 1978, we have visited
56 countries. We have performed
over 100,000 life-changing surgical
procedures and taught over 239,000
people about basic healthcare. We
have also trained over 42,250 local
professionals in their area of expertise.
When our hospital ship leaves
port, it leaves stronger healthcare
infrastructure in its wake. Mercy Ships
leave a legacy of lasting change.
Striving for more
Over 20 per cent of our training and
mentoring is delivered by Africans who
have been trained by us to ensure that
context and culture are embedded in
all we do. Each year, 100 individuals
from the countries we serve stand
alongside us and passionately inspire
their own governments to be part of
the change.
Mercy Ships will always strive to do
more and do it better than ever before.
The continent of Africa is a flourishing
and changing landscape, and yet
abject poverty is still rife. While the
number of those living on less than $2
a day has halved globally in the last
20 years, in sub-Saharan Africa, the
number has barely changed. So, while
world poverty has halved, we need
to redouble the surgical and training
capacity of our fleet to serve Africa.
In 2014, we commissioned the
construction of the world’s first
purpose-built civilian hospital ship.
Sarah Kwok, a British
volunteer anaesthetist,
carries Saliou up the
gangway for his cleft lip
surgery
Our incredible
volunteers
transform
lives
13MERCY SHIPS |
HEALTH & SOCIAL WORK
Thehull has now been completed. Our
next step is to turn the basic structure
into a fully functional, state of the art,
mobile hospital – two and a half times
bigger than any ship we have ever run
before. The
Global Mercy
will increase
our surgical and teaching capacity
from 8,500 operations to more than
20,000 operations per year as we
run it alongside our current ship, the
Africa Mercy
. Our training capacity
will double to over 2,800 African
professionals a year, not to mention
it will enable us to operate in two
countries simultaneously.
The design of the new ship
incorporates 40 years of our learning,
crew feedback and expert input in
its design. Bespoke workspaces will
incorporate the latest technology for
crew safety and security, and the ship
will provide accommodation for 641
people, including the crew and all
medical staff onboard as well as an
expanded patient ward.
Delivering for the future
We have the potential, within a
generation, to transform the healthcare
narrative in Africa by delivering
world-class service in partnership with
nations passionate about seeing their
healthcare improved. Thanks to our
family of partners and supporters,
we have been able to help patients
receive surgery that has changed their
lives forever, freeing them to embrace
their future. We want this for more
people – and the funding we have
recently secured from the Department
for International Development will only
support us in achieving this aim.
Our ships provide training platforms,
observation facilities and classrooms
onboard, meaning we can build for the
future by providing vital training for
medical professionals, while we work
to upgrade the local healthcare facilities
and transform the lives of people
suffering from diseases ofpoverty.
The UK’s commitment to deliver 0.7
per cent of GDP to international aid is
an essential element in this mix. At a
time when the public is more alive than
ever to the debate of charity starting
at home or abroad, charity versus
partnership and the best methods of
efficient, effective and safe delivery,
Mercy Ships is proud to step up to the
challenge of serving the needs of West
Africa, learning from its partners every
step of the way.
Mercy Ships
will always
strive to do
more and do
it better than
ever before
Saliou pictured blowing
bubbles with two
volunteers after his
surgery

www.mercyships.org.uk

This article was sponsored by Mercy Ships. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss.

Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss

Even by the standards of the day –this has been one of the most exciting and unpredictable years in British politics.

The leadership election we’ve just seen marks a huge moment in our country’s history. This government is taking a decisive new direction, embracing the opportunities of Brexit and preparing our country to flourish outside the EU.

As international trade secretary, I’ll be driving forward work on the free trade agreements that are going to be a priority for the government. Free trade isn’t just an abstract concept bandied around by technocrats. It is crucial for a strong economy and for the ability of families to make ends meet. Free trade benefits people in every part of our country, as British firms export to new markets and people doing the weekly shop have access to a wider choice of goods at lower prices.

The essence of free trade is in the title: freedom. It’s about giving people the power to exchange their goods without heavy government taxation or interference. Commerce and free exchange are the engine room of prosperity and social mobility. I’m determined to tackle the forces who want to hold that back.

One of my priorities is agreeing an exciting new free trade deal with the US, building on the great relationship between our two countries and the Prime Minister and US President. But I’ll also be talking to other partners including New Zealand, Australia and fast-growing Asian markets.

And with the EU too, we want a friendly and constructive relationship, as constitutional equals, and as friends and partners in facing the challenges that lie ahead – a relationship based on a deep free trade agreement. Our country produces some of the world’s most successful exports, and the opportunity to bring these to the rest of the world should make us all excited about the future. It is this excitement, optimism and ambition which I believe will come to define this government.

For too long now, we have been told Britain isn’t big or important enough to survive outside the EU – that we have to accept a deal that reflects our reduced circumstances. I say that’s rubbish. With the right policies in place, we can be the most competitive, free-thinking, prosperous nation on Earth exporting to the world and leading in new developments like AI. To do that, we’ll give the brilliant next generation of entrepreneurs the tools they need to succeed. Since 2015, there has been a staggering 85 per cent rise in the number of businesses set up by 18 to 24 year olds – twice the level set up by the same age group in France and Germany. We’ll help them flourish by championing enterprise, cutting taxes and making regulation flexible and responsive to their needs.

As we do that, we’ll level up and unite all parts of the UK with great transport links, fibre broadband in every home and proper school funding, so everyone shares in our country’s success.

2019 has been the year of brewing economic and political revolution. 2020 will be the year when a revitalised Conservative government turbo charges the economy, boosts prospects for people across the country, and catapults Britain back to the forefront of the world stage.



Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss
Secretary of State for International Development