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A woman holds her smiling baby in the lobby of the Red Cross War Memorial Children's Hospital

Serving the Children of South Africa – Before and During a Pandemic

The Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital opened more than 60 years ago in South Africa with a mission to ensure families throughout the country receive the treatment and care they need. The hospital now serves more than 250,000 children a year who come from the Western Cape and surrounding provinces in the country. Many are younger than 12 months old.

As a leader in specialized pediatric healthcare, the hospital continues to live up to its founding mission during the COVID-19 pandemic by equipping its healthcare workers with necessary tools and equipment. This includes Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) like N95 masks, scrubs, goggles, gloves, and shoe covers. Protecting staff is imperative as they are crucial to providing life-saving care for children.

How it Helps

Supported by the Children’s Hospital Trust, the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital is treating children for a variety of medical conditions while sister hospitals in South Africa focus on caring for COVID-19 patients. Since these neighboring hospitals have a limited number of beds for children, the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital is playing a vital role in ensuring all children who need treatment are able to access it. Many patients come from lower-income communities that are hotspots for the virus.

To overcome resulting challenges like increased pressure in wards, demand for more medical staff, and necessary social work support for patients dealing with abuse, violence, and neglect, the Children’s Hospital Trust raised funds from several donors in June 2020. The support enables the hospital to employ more medical staff to fight the virus and its aftermath, and to provide frontline workers with PPE. Additional PPE is supplied to caregivers so they can safely visit their children during treatment — particularly those who are immunocompromised or have acute respiratory diseases.

While the full impact of COVID-19 on children is not yet known, the medical team from the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital is ready to provide medical care for the virus and any other ailment patients may face. We are grateful for the opportunity to partner with the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital on such important work during the pandemic.

Get Involved: Support the Hospital’s Efforts

While its efforts are making a difference to children every day, the hospital needs additional support. Consider contributing to the Children’s Hospital Trust to ensure the hospital team can rapidly support children from vulnerable communities.   

Foundation Project Lead

Stronger Together: Our COVID-19 Response

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