Just as we face grave challenges here in Scotland, so too our thoughts still stray beyond our shores to those whose needs are even greater. For some number of years, the University of Glasgow has developed a strong and binding partnership with the College of Medicine, Blantyre Malawi. This was the focus of some really fantastic discussions with the young people in New Kilpatrick Sunday School last month; the Sunday School is already dreaming up new ways of helping our Malawian friends.
Coronavirus knows no geographical boundaries and now poses a new and contemporary threat in Malawi. The Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Blantyre, Malawi is the largest hospital in the region and is charged with providing care to those Malawians who contract COVID-19. We in the University team are in very regular contact with our friends in Malawi and especially with Prof Mwapatsa Mipando, the Principle of the College, who is leading the response to COVID on behalf of the Malawian medical community and Government. His task is not easy. There is no intensive care provision, nor ready supply of oxygen. The tools at the disposal of medical and nursing teams in Malawi are severely limited and will stretch only to basic care and support of those afflicted. A particular challenge is the shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE). This can be sourced but unfortunately there are no funds available to purchase this on behalf of the medical and nursing teams. Even modest sums of money would provide essential basic protection and would allow the delivery of care to people in the most desperate need. Could we in New Kilpatrick help?
Sincere thanks on behalf of all in the Malawian front line. Iain McInnes