News & Events

QECH, MLW launch Oxygen Plant

The first ever oxygen generating plant has been installed at the Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre courtesy of the Malawi Liverpool Wellcome Trust. The plant will generate over a million litres of oxygen daily saving the lives of patients with Pneumonia, Tuberculosis, HIV and other lung conditions including COVID-19.

Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Dr. Ben Phiri described the development as a ‘milestone’.

Speaking during the official launch of the plant on Friday 19th June 2020, Dr. Phiri said that the oxygen plant is a big contribution and a great asset towards the fight against COVID-19.

“The oxygen plant is a contribution that will keep giving even after the COVID-19 pandemic. I urge other organisations to follow this noble example and to give towards COVID-19 to ease the challenges that the pandemic has brought on Malawi,” Dr. Phiri said.

Echoing the words of the Minister, Hospital Director for QECH Dr. Samson Mndolo said the oxygen plant ‘is a big sacrifice by MLW and not a mean achievement’.

“what we are seeing now is the oxygen plant but there is a lot more that MLW has done”, he said.

On average, the hospital was spending about MK25 million to MK30 Million a month to buy oxygen which it will now no longer have to spend thanks to the plant. In addition to supplying oxygen to QECH, the plant will also supply oxygen to surrounding health facilities as well.

Speaking at the oxygen inauguration event, MLW Director, Professor Stephen Gordon  acknowledged the support from Illovo Group of companies for providing their jet to bring the engineers who installed the plant to Malawi from Cape Town, South Africa. 

The Director then appealed to the government to install similar plants at Zomba, Lilongwe and Mzuzu central hospitals.

The oxygen plant project, was initially began by the government and MLW has been able to complete it using a grant of 2.1 million pounds from the Wellcome Trust. The grant has also been used to purchase personal protective equipment for frontline health workers during this time of COVID-19.