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Increase medical capacity

Through education, training and advocacy

Building sustainable healthcare through education, training and advocacy programmes

Helping equip local healthcare professionals to lead and transform health systems in their own countries is at the core of Mercy Ships’ programmes. The capacity of local healthcare professionals is increased by providing opportunity for increasing their range of skills. This is how health care systems are strengthened from within to become more effective, efficient and responsive.  

Building medical capacity amplifies the stories of the professionals who are impacted, as well as the programmes that are conducted. Training courses identify a nation’s greatest need and potential impact; SAFE Obstetric Anaesthesia, safe surgery, palliative care, and many others. The participants go on to multiply access to essential health care services within their nations.

Multiplying health care capacity

After learning a cataract technique that is particularly appropriate for low-income country conditions, Dr Wodomé teaches ophthalmic surgeons to train others, multiplying access to sight-restoring surgery.

From the dental clinic in Guinea, West Africa and biomedical training in Liberia, to the Cataract Surgical Training Institute in Togo, valuable and varied training programmes are conducted across African nations.

In Senegal, a country of 16 million people, there is not a single paediatric orthopaedic surgeon. Dr Mohammed Sabounji aims to be the first.

“I got really lucky to be in the mentorship, because it allowed me to be part of the whole treatment of club foot, from the casting to the relapses,’ said Senegal’s Dr Sabounji. “I was afforded ample opportunity to get the training I needed to improve my competence and my confidence.”

Common use of open fires for cooking in low-income countries sees toddlers and babies frequently suffering third degree burns. Without treatment, burns contractures cause permanent disability.

Children born with club feet, cleft lip and palate in the developing world have little chance of having corrective surgery. Those who survive are often rejected by their communities from their earliest memories.

How we build capacity


We offer training, courses and mentoring for local professionals

Medical courses

Together with local leaders, governments and the national ministries of health, development teams assess healthcare needs in local hospitals and design and implement renovation projects.


Projects to improve hospital facilities e.g. construction or renovation. Mercy Ships partners to install new or improve electricity, water, and sanitation facilities within the host


There can only be good health with a good and balanced nutrition.

More stories of medical capacity building

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