October 6, 2020 – International charity Mercy Ships, a provider of non-governmental hospital ships, has today announced a first look at the construction of its largest hospital ship, which plans to sail to Africa in late 2021 under the name of ‘Global Mercy’. Mercy Ships, a global organization powered by charitable donors and volunteers, has been providing surgical care to those in need for more than 40 years, free of charge.
In addition to providing surgeries, the Global Mercy will be outfitted with state-of-the-art training spaces including a simulation lab with augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR), mannequins and other training tools and simulated post-op care space, which allow trainers to simulate local conditions and limitations in order to teach best practices in low-resource environments.
“The Global Mercy will be a true modern marvel— a fully custom-built hospital ship with customized instruments, state-of-the-art technology and highly-trained talent of a modern hospital,” said Rosa Whitaker, President of Mercy Ships. “It also represents a unique call-to-action for anyone called to serve, and it presents the opportunity for people to use their skill set to positively impact global healthcare.”
The 174-meter, 37,000-ton ship will have six operating rooms and house over 600 volunteers from around the globe representing many disciplines including surgeons, maritime crew, cooks, teachers, electricians, the host staff and more. The ship will also feature a 682-seat auditorium, student academy, gymnasium, pool, café, shop and library – all of which have been designed to accommodate up to 950 crew onboard when docked in port.
As a result, the Global Mercy will deliver a safe and clean environment to various African nations, providing help and resources from some of the most well-trained physicians in the world. Over the vessel’s 50 year expected lifespan, it is estimated that more than 150,000 lives will be changed onboard through surgery alone, according to Mercy Ships.
Global Mercy will join the charity’s current flagship ‘Africa Mercy’, helping to expand the organization’s ability to provide services to those in need. Last year, Mercy Ships partnered with Oculus to create a virtual reality film (shown above) that gave audiences a chance to step onto the Africa Mercy ship. For more information about the Mercy Ships organization, updates on Global Mercy or how to volunteer or donate, please visit the charity’s website.
Video / image credit: Mercy Ships / Vimeo