The St. Lukes Mission Hospital in Mphanshya was founded in 1964 as a Jesuit Mission hospital, run by Canadian nuns. In 1978, nuns of the Polish Order of Mercy of St. Charles Borromeo, a Catholic nursing order, took over the direction of the hospital. In 2007, Dr. Matthias Furrer and his wife, Dr. Kathrin Furrer, became the medical directors.


The hospital has 100 beds and offers services for internal medicine, surgery, obstetrics, and pediatrics. In addition to expanded primary care, the medical goals include:

  • Improvement of obstetrics in the region. Childbirth in the outlying areas is still an enormous risk for both mother and child.
  • Improvement of the education and training of medical personnel, especially those who will be helping in rural areas.

In addition to basic treatment, the following need to be added:

  • Treatment center for HIV-diagnostics and treatment with a special laboratory, HIV-acute unit, HIV-Rehabilitation unit, and follow-up program.
  • Center for nutrition
  • Homebased care (like Spitex)
  • Dental program
  • Eye clinic
  • Psychiatric treatment
  • Gynecological clinic with cancer prevention programs, sterilization, and family planning
  • Ambulance services
  • Adult education

Very important is the education of medical personnel, including nurses, county health workers, internship program for medical students (from Lusaka and elsewhere), “medical licentiates” (ML), and family members (as part of an HIV rehabilitations program). One program that is almost completed is a midwifery education department.