Current Projects

American Partners are committed to developing sustainable solutions for Mwandi Mission Hospital

About the Solar Project

Solar Project

Through generous donations, Mwandi Hospital American Partners has been able to fund incredible, life-sustaining projects.

About the Solar Project

One major goal of the 2017 Strategic Plan is to fully convert the hospital to solar power by 2027. The plan recognized that trying to meet the constantly rising costs of the nationally generated electricity was unsustainable for the institution. A consultant was engaged to assess the power needs of the hospital and to recommend a phased implementation plan.

The first phase of the solar project was completed on September 14, 2018, with solar panels installed on the roof of the main hospital building and deep-cycle batteries activated. After the completion of Phase 1, the hospital was able to utilize solar energy between 8 – 16 hours each day. The main hospital building now has an average of 56% of its daily electricity needs supplied by the solar system. The electricity consumption from solar power and from ZESCO is being monitored continuously.

The COVID pandemic delayed implementation of Phase 2 of the solar project. Our solar project technical team includes representatives from Zambia and the United States, as well as the solar contractor. Members of the team met twice via Zoom since January 2021 and have had contact by email at other times. The team is coordinating the Phase 2 system upgrades and will be planning future upgrades as the hospital’s master plan is developed. At the beginning of the year, the team re-examined the equipment planned for Phase 2 of the project. These discussions led the team to recommend a containerized system with more efficient and longer-lasting Lithium-ion batteries instead of lead acid batteries. Further, the containerized system will be centrally located making management easier and providing controlled temperatures that will optimize battery efficiency. The original plan would have added separate installations scattered around the institution. Fortunately, Corteva’s $30,000 gift will allow us to make these changes and to expand the original equipment proposed for Phase 2.

The net effect of these modifications will be to increase the use of solar power in the hospital during the day and at night. We anticipate:

  • that an increase in battery storage by 30kWH will allow usage of solar power by parts of the hospital at night.
  • that an increase of 75 more solar panels with additional charge controllers will add 24kW to the existing system and will allow more areas of the current hospital, including the maternity ward, to be added to the system. Some of the departments will be supplied entirely by solar power during the day.
  • that these new modifications to Phase 2 of the solar project will help prepare the baseline for a conversion to the 3Phase electrical system envisioned by the master plan.

Project Gallery

Reproductive Health Center

Global health experts agree that a community’s health begins with effective reproductive and child health services. To be successful, these services must be fully utilized by women, men and children, preferably as a family unit. At Mwandi hospital in western Zambia, a new reproductive health center will triple patient capacity, provide greater privacy and safety, and create a space for nutritional counseling and health education, thus improving antenatal and childhood health in the Mwandi district.

Conditions in the hospital’s current 60 square meters Maternal & Child Health facility (MCH) limit access to mother and child health services and deter male involvement. Overcrowding, poor ventilation, lack of privacy, and long wait times discourage MCH use. Comparing patient use of MCH with village census data indicates that Mwandi residents are underutilizing MCH services. Limited use of antenatal and under-5 health services contributes to adverse birth outcomes, stunted growth and childhood mortality.

Increasing to 160 square meter reproductive health center will provide safer, faster and more effective patient care. A waiting area with seating and bathrooms will accommodate more patients and allow faster check-ins. Private exam rooms will safeguard patient confidentiality for all patients, especially those who are HIV+. Informative health education programs for groups (e.g. child nutrition) will occur in a covered area, eliminating many daily program repetitions and freeing staff to spend more time with patients.

By broadening access to care and education, the reproductive health center will: reduce infant mortality, decrease pregnancy complications and adolescent pregnancies; increase male involvement in antenatal and childcare; empower families to decide on the number and spacing of children; and reduce stunted growth and childhood mortality. Patient usage and health outcomes will be monitored by the center to track its progress toward achieving these health goals for the Mwandi community.

Your Donation Makes a Big Difference

We greatly appreciate your donation. Your donation, no matter how big or small, helps the community of Mwandi in a meaningful way.