About the hospital

About Hospital - Who are we

Who are we?

The Sacred Heart Hospital in Katondwe, run by the Polish nuns from the Congregation of Little Servant Sisters of the Immaculate Conception (Siostry Służebniczki Starowiejskie), is one of very few medical facilities within 250 kilometres. People from three African countries may receive help here: Zambia (where Katondwe is located) and the bordering countries: Mozambique and Zimbabwe.

We can accommodate up to 100 patients simultaneously, the majority of whom are pregnant women, children, adults injured by wild animals, victims of road accidents and people with HIV.

The hospital is divided into several departments (wards): a paediatric ward, a ward of internal medicine (female and male), obstetrics and gynaecology ward (with a maternity unit) and a ward of palliative care. We have a professional operating theatre consisting of two operation rooms, a diagnostic imaging lab (ultrasound, X-ray) and a pharmacy. All the facilities can operate around the clock, thanks to a solar power source and a power generator. We also have a GP outpatient surgery at the hospital, where many preventive and educational actions and campaigns are organised on an ongoing basis. We also launch field medical programmes, which allow us to reach out to the people who cannot come here on their own.

All our services are provided free of charge.

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Our employees

It is hard to believe, but with a huge amount of work to be done, there is only one doctor permanently employed at the hospital – Sister Mirosława Góra, who is also the director of this facility. Sister Małgorzata is a trained surgeon, but in her daily work, she combines her knowledge of various medical (and non-medical) disciplines. She has been on a mission in Zambia for 30 years. Interestingly, she was the European Champion in canoeing during her student days!

Two other Polish nuns support sister Mirosława – sister Edyta Wójtowicz and sister Krystyna Matusz. Sister Edyta is a radiology technician, but in practice, she has a wide range of responsibilities (and skills!). She performs X-rays and ultrasound scans, assists in surgical procedures, administers general and local anaesthesia, and supervises the hospital pharmacy. Sister Krystyna is a trained nurse and is mainly responsible for the administrative work in the facility. Additionally, she is often on the anaesthesiology duty. The other personnel consists of Sisters from Zambia and lay people.

  • Sister Mirosława Góra

    Sister Mirosława is a trained surgeon, but in her daily work, she combines her knowledge of various medical (and non-medical) disciplines. She has been on a mission in Zambia for 30 years. Interestingly, she was the European Champion in canoeing during her student days!

  • Sister Krystyna Matusz

    Krystyna is a trained nurse and is mainly responsible for the administrative work in the facility. Additionally, she is often on the anaesthesiology duty

  • Sister Edyta Wojtowicz

    Sister Edyta is a radiology technician, but in practice, she has a wide range of responsibilities (and skills!). She performs X-rays and ultrasound scans, assists in surgical procedures, administers general and local anaesthesia, and supervises the hospital pharmacy.

  • siostra Edyta Wójtowicz

    S. Edyta formalnie jest technikiem radiologii, jednak w praktyce ma bardzo szeroki wachlarz obowiązków (i umiejętności!). Wykonuje badania RTG i USG, asystuje do operacji, prowadzi znieczulenia ogólne i miejscowe, a także trzyma pieczę nad szpitalną apteką.

  • Christel Kappeller

    Inżynier ze Szwajcarii, z wieloletnim doświadczeniem w pracy misyjnej w Azji i Afryce, doradza w sprawach technicznych i budowlanych.

  • Susan Nkhoma

    A wound dressing assistant and an AIDS programme therapist. She has worked in the hospital pharmacy for almost 20 years

  • Diamond Chileya

    He is a regular nurse and an instrumenting nurse. He has a passion for assisting in surgical procedures and has extensive surgical experience.

  • Joan Phiri

    A midwife, very dedicated to her work and committed to teaching younger generations.

  • Stephen Tembo

    A hospital driver, specialist in obtaining blood for transfusions from the blood bank in Lusaka.

  • Ethel Tembo

    A wound dressing assistant, she can successfully treat even the most problematic wounds.

  • Bartholomew Kamlewe

    An energetic, talented midwife and nurse. He is very interested in neonatology and training the younger generations.

  • Evarista Lungu

    She supervises nurses and midwives, works in a mother and baby outpatient clinic, and is involved in a cervical cancer prevention programme. She is also great at cooking.

  • Alice Chilembo

    The most senior and most experienced nurse and midwife, with a great energy and passion towards her work.

  • Kenneth Chuni

    A surgical nurse, practically acts as a "junior surgical assistant". He is involved in many AIDS-related projects. He has been in Katondwe for almost 30 years, and he studied under the supervision of sister Mirosława.

  • Harrison Mwanza

    He is a nurse, a coordinator of the AIDS programme. He is in charge of the men's ward.

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The mission and its history

The origins of the Katondwe Hospital date back to 1910 – the Jesuits, fleeing across the Luangwa River from the Portuguese revolution in Mozambique, settled here. This was the land of Northern Rhodesia, under the British rule back then, very favourable towards the missionary activity. In 1939, the Servant Sisters came to Katondwe and took care of the parish church of the Jesuits, looked after local children, and provided medical care for the local people. In the first half of the 20th century, the first medical facilities began to provide help to the sick.

The construction of the hospital started in 1962, and its official launch took place on 27 March 1963. Initially, the hospital had 20 patient beds. Since 1969, the Sacred Heart Hospital has been run by the Congregation of Little Servant Sisters of the Immaculate Conception (Siostry Służebniczki Starowiejskie) and has continued to grow thanks to the work of the entire staff, with the support of its Friends from all over the world.

Find out more about the Little Servant Sisters

Our mission today

The heat up to 45°C, limited access to electricity, inadequate medical supplies and shortages of equipment and personnel – this is our daily missionary reality. Even the most basic supplies and resources are problematic here, such as access to water or transport and accommodation for the hospital staff.

Katondwe is surrounded by hills, so the climate here is constantly very hot, withering and rough, even for the Zambians. The building itself requires frequent renovations. All medical equipment wears out very quickly in such extreme temperatures. We face ever growing demands from the government, but at the same time the funding we receive is completely inadequate and decreases constantly. Anyway, we strive to provide the best possible help to all those who are sick and in need, and we also try to develop the facility. However, for obvious reasons, this is not possible without the external support, which means a great deal to us. We are very grateful for any help. Thank you!

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