The Port of Antwerp has made the arrival of the Global Mercy, the newest hospital ship of Mercy Ships, possible by offering a free berth and support in Antwerp. Volunteers from Belgium and abroad set up and finish the Global Mercy, the largest private hospital ship in the world. This includes the installation of medical equipment and IT systems on board, as well as the supply and crewing of the ship for its first mission.
The Antwerp Port Authority is not alone in offering financial support and facilities to Mercy Ships. In fact the social commitment in the entire port community is very high and shows a strong example of community building. Dozens of companies in the port facilitate and cooperate in order to finish the design of the ship in time. Just to name few of many examples, Water-link offered free water, CEPA provided a port worker, Zuidnatie provided a reach stacker, and Boluda and Multraship provided tugs.
The Global Mercy is a unique ship in the passenger class: 174 meters long, 28.6 meters wide and a gross tonnage of 37,000. It has 6 operating rooms, 200 beds, a laboratory, general outpatient clinics and eye and dental clinics. The total area of the hospital department is 7,000 m².
The Global Mercy will be the ‘partner ship’ of the current hospital ship, the Africa Mercy. Mercy Ships expects to more than double the impact of its work with the new vessel, both with life-changing operations and with education and training of local caregivers in the poorest countries in Africa. During its missions, the Global Mercy can accommodate 950 people, including 641 crew members, who consist of volunteers from all over the world. In addition to the hospital, the ship also has first-class training facilities with which Mercy Ships contributes to the sustainable development of local medical care in many countries.
In the spring of 2022, Global Mercy will begin active service in Dakar, the first of many new missions in the next 50 years.