Work complete on new solar electricity supply system at Malawi hospital

News provided by EMMS International on Wednesday 3rd Apr 2024

EMMS International is delighted to share its first publication to detail the process of solarising a hospital. The journal article is published in Tropical Doctor and describes the implementation of a new electricity supply system at Mulanje Mission Hospital, Malawi, which integrates the use of grid electricity, solar-generated electricity and battery back-up.

Since 2021, Mulanje Mission Hospital has been renovating and re-installing its solar power and electrical system. Electricity outages due to insufficient supply, natural disasters and poor infrastructure are common in Malawi, which impacts on the safety of patients and staff. Thanks to its supporters, EMMS International, Scotland's longest-running healthcare charity, was able to partner with MMH to donate €104,997 to this urgently-needed work.

Mulanje Mission Hospital now has a 3-phase grid-coupled solar electricity system, which can be controlled via a mobile app by the maintenance supervisor. This is useful, for example when bad weather or grid outages are expected, in which case the batteries can be kept fully charged throughout the night.

The hospital's electricity bills have been reduced by 60.6%, with diesel for the generator rarely needed. The water supply has also improved as power for borehole pumping is now constantly available. The reliable electricity reaching all departments of the hospital has resulted in a stable working environment for staff, enabling them to focus on patient care.

The history of the partnership between EMMS International and Mulanje Mission Hospital goes back to the late 1800s. In recent years, EMMS has donated more than £1.3 million to the hospital to support work reducing the spread of tuberculosis with faster diagnoses, offer clean water to reduce cholera transmission, reach families in rural areas to offer palliative care, and to cut teenage pregnancies in the community. 

Dr Arie Glas, Medical Director of Mulanje Mission Hospital, hopes the publication sharing the work to develop a reliable solar power supply will mean that, "Many more hospitals can go green, end black-outs, and save running costs!".

Press release distributed by Pressat on behalf of EMMS International, on Wednesday 3 April, 2024. For more information subscribe and follow

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