Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital (QECH) - Malawi

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The Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital (QECH) is located in Blantyre, southern Malawi. Children with cancer were started to be treated at the hospital in 1964 and in 1997 a separate paediatric oncology ward was opened with 17 dedicated beds. The capacity of the ward was again expanded in 2010, along with a refurbishment, to now providing 24 beds for children with cancer, as well as an isolation room and separate area for procedures. The unit was run by Prof Elizabeth Molyneux from 1997 until 2015, and has now been taken over by Dr George Chagaluka, who recently completed his African Fellowship in paediatric oncology at the Red Cross Hospital in South Africa. The unit has 3 nurses and the hospital has a paediatric surgery team as well as good palliative care support. Pathology services are limited and there is no radiotherapy available. Prof Molyneux has built up several strong relationships with supporting healthcare professionals and the ward at QECH is twinned with both the Royal Victoria Infirmary (Newcastle, UK) and VUMC Medical Center (Amsterdam, The Netherlands), which provide expertise and support for the paediatric oncology service both in person and from a distance.

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