Mandela Children’s Hospital not only for elite - Machel
Nelson Mandela's widow Graca Machel says the Parktown-based children’s hospital is not only for the elite.
JOHANNESBURG - Nelson Mandela’s widow Graca Machel says the children’s hospital named after the former statesman is an expression of Madiba’s philosophy that every child counts.
The Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital which had been under construction for the past two years, was launched in Parktown today.
The hospital will cater for specialised operations and procedures for all children living in the SADC region and will also function as a training centre.
Machel says the children’s hospital is not only for the elite.
“On the contrary, it is to show that from the bottomall of us have to go and what we have to achieve.”
Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi has promised to continue giving the hospital support.
“I want to stand here in front of you and tell you that you’ve got that support and will get it forever.”
Machel says many fought against the construction of a children’s hospital in his name, warning that it would be a facility for the elite.
She has thanked Health Minister Motsoaledi for making Madiba’s lifelong dream come true.
“From the onset you’ve been a champion of the children’s hospital, we hope you will continue to mobilise your colleagues and that government to continue to support this initiative.”
Nelson Mandela Children’s Trust chair Sibongile Mkhabela says the centre is a place for world class treatment.
Motsoaledi says the newly launched Nelson Mandela’s Children Hospital will not only provide care but also become a centre for ongoing training on illnesses that affect children.
The children’s hospital is one of four on the African continent that offers research, training and special procedures specifically for children.
Motsoaledi says government will use the facility as a model.
“It’s not only going to treat children but it’s going to be very important for ongoing treatment of conditionsthat affect children as well as insure access to research, to assist to solve the health problems that are new to children, to increase childhood survival and decrease infant and child mortality.”
(Edited by Winnie Theletsane)