RIP Dr Joop Jansen

On 16th December, at 11 in the morning, Dr Joop Jansen died at the age of 67, only a couple of days after he returned home from Katete, Zambia.
Joop Jansen suffered from an incurable cancer. He accepted his fate with admirable resignation. Faithful friends lovingly cared for him during his last days and he was able and strong enough to see his children to bid them a final goodbye.

Joop Jansen came to Katete with a mountain of experience. He had worked in Africa for over 30 years: in Uganda, Tanzania and Zambia (west Zambia and Minga, Eastern Province).

‘Doctor Joop’ as everybody called him, cared for his patients, worked hard and was a very able doctor, especially in the field of obstetrics and gynaecology.
He moved mountains.
He made a professionally important step by training with Dr Tom Raassen, an expert surgeon in the field of VVF (Vesicovaginal Fistula) surgery – a complicated procedure to repair the urogenital fistula. This is a devastating condition due to an abnormal connection between the urinary and genital tracts, a severe physical trauma following abnormal heavy labour and always leading to social stigma and isolation.
Joop Jansen introduced the ‘VVF-camps’. Women, suffering from this trauma and who were consequently leading ‘hidden’ lives, were called upon on radio to come to the hospital to undergo surgery. Many of them were thus given a second life.

Joop Jansen was also, from 2009 till 2015 chairman of Chaz, (Churches Health Organisation of Zambia, umbrella organization for the Mission Based Hospitals in Zambia ), and in this capacity he did a lot for the health care in mission hospitals.

Joop Jansen lived the good life, he liked to cook and eat and chat. When his Dutch compatriots of the Medical Support Group visited, they could count on a big meal that Joop had diligently prepared in his small kitchen, or else, at the end of a long working day, they would receive a text message what about a beer? and then would sit for hours at Tikondane bar.
Throughout the years Joop Jansen was the continuous factor, for the Dutch Medical Support group and for St Francis’ Hospital. Expatriate doctors came and went. Doctor Joop stayed.

The death of Dr Joop Jansen saddened us, board members of MSG, greatly. But for all those depending on adequate medical care at St Francis’ his decease is a sore blow.
Thank you ever so much, zikomo kwambiri doctor Joop. Rest in peace.


Book of Condolences



A Book of Condolences was opened by the Hospital Management for staff and friends in honour of Dr. Joop.

Zambia among six safest places to travel

Zambia is among the six safest places to travel during Covid-19 Pandemic
An international travel organization has named Zambia among six safest travel destinations in world, and the only one in Africa so far to receive the recognition.

Zambia is the fourth safest tourism destination ahead of Uruguay and Saudi Arabia while Australia, New Zealand and Singapore are the top three respectively, according to an article published on the Wego Travel Blog website, entitled “Safe Places to Travel During Covid-19 Pandemic.”
The ranking is based on the standards of the European Union countries to coordinate travel restrictions, according to information shared by Huzaifa Jada, a representative of the Zambian mission in Riyadh. Of the 70 countries with sufficient data and testing, only six were ranked as “Safe” for travel.
The classification was based on epidemiological criteria, regarding the ability of countries to contain the pandemic, achieve stability over a long period of time, and the efficiency of the health system, particularly, the clinical capacity for intensive care rooms and efficiency medical staff.
Australia topped the results of the tests in terms of positive coronavirus swabs conducted on 1.693 per million people, with 0.0% of 0.5 new cases per million people.
New Zealand ranked second with 1,365 tests per million inhabitants, with 1% of 0.8 million new cases per million inhabitants. Singapore came third with 4,491 tests per million people, 0.0%, out of 1.3 new cases per million people.
Zambia ranked fourth with 264 examinations per million people, with 0.7% of new cases per million people. Cuba followed in fifth place with 774 examinations per million inhabitants, with 0.4% of 3.5 new cases per million inhabitants.
Saudi Arabia has conducted more than 1.5 million laboratory tests for coronavirus, of which 0.6% are positive samples out of 8.8 new cases per million people.
The Wego data had last been updated on November 27 at the time this article was published.

Judith Mumba reports

On September 4th we received the following update of Mrs Judith Mumba about the situation at St Francis’ Hospital:

“The Covid 19 situation here remains the same, with some positives being recorded every day, especially in Lusaka and the Copperbelt. St Francis recorded one positive who was visiting Katete then came to the hospital. By the time we got the positive result she had already traveled back, but all staff were swabbed and are waiting for results. None have fallen ill so far. It has been made mandatory to wear masks in public places.
We have continued with the same precautions of no visitors, bed siders only for critically ill patients. Every one entering the hospital is screened for any obvious symptoms. We still don’t have students on the wards so the workload is sometimes too much, especially for the surgical wards. The only students in school are those writing exams in Nov/Dec 2020.
At the moment we are alright with supplies for Covid 19 prevention due to the fact that the funding from the government has been regular.
The Social Worker’s name is Chaze Sibamba. As far as I know she has not been involved with the quads as yet. I have asked Fred to send you a report. There has not been a recent visit to the family.*
The only muzungu doctors are Dr Lisa in OBGY from the Netherlands and Dr Rikki, Anaesthesiologist.”
*There has been contact by phone with the family and Fred Ntongwe. The family is well and so are the two babies. 


Logie Legacy’s fundraising campaign

St Francis’ Hospital Scottish partner, the Logie Lagacy, has started a fundraising campaign for personal protective equipment for the hospital as well as drilling another borehole to ensure a safe water supply. Help them to reach their target: 10,000 pounds is needed.

The hospital does not have mains water supply. It relies on it’s own groundwater boreholes. Water shortage is now affecting a range of critical services; clinical, domestic, laundry, kitchen and sanitation. Even the simplest infection control measure such as hand washing will become increasingly difficult. They need to drill a new borehole.

At the same time, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for hospital and community staff is urgently needed as the spread of Coronavirus advances throughout the continent of Africa, including Zambia. It is already present in urban areas. There are cases in Lusaka, the capital, and it is only a matter of time before cases increase throughout rural areas such as Katete and St Francis Hospital. Having PPE can significantly reduce infection rates and keep staff and patients safe. They lack funds to buy PPE supplies.

About the Logie Legacy:

The St Francis Hospital (SFH) Twinning Partnership with NHS Borders was formally founded in 2008 through the hard work and dedication of Dr’s Sandy and Dorothy Logie. Located in the remote Eastern Province, SFH is Zambia’s largest mission hospital & our UK volunteers support in various ways.

Charity Registration No. SC047148

On 6 June 2020: nearly 1,500 pounds donated! Click here and go to Just Giving to also contribute to a safe working environment and safe water!

Namushi Kalumbi reports on Covid-19

Namushi Kalumbi is back at Ketete and keeps us posted about the Covid-19 situation.

Partners meet online

On May 3rd partners discussed the Covid-19 situation in an online Zoom meeting.

The management of St Francis’ Hospital Dr Lalick Banda, Mr Fred Ntongwe, Mrs Judith Mumba and Robert Banda were present. Brian Magowan of the Logie Legacy chaired the meeting. Others present:
Logie Legacy: Chris Faldon, Alison Aitken en Lorraine Wilson.
Border Hospital: Ralph Roberts .
Friends of SFH: Andrew Cairns.
500 Miles: Olivia Giles.
SFH Medical Support Group: Peter Sleutelberg en Arlet Splint.
Also present: John Western, Tim Legge, Chloe Hunter, Chris Jary, Mike Chudlei.

Reason for the meeting: Covid-19 and its consequences for the hospital.

As yet the virus has not reached the Easter Province. In order to be prepared the MoH visited the hospital for inspection, established a protocol, and supplied the hospital with tests and disinfectant. PPE was promised but has not materialised. The Friends and MSG donated money to purchase PPE locally.

Four members of the management team are appointed crisis managers. The procedure is as follows: A patient complaining about symptoms consistent with Covid-19 is tested, isolated and transported by staff (with PPE!) to Mpangwe Motel for isolation. Definite outcome of the test has to come form Lusaka.

Zambia is not in a complete lockdown, but it the public is advised not to travel. Church services and other meetings are forbidden.
Shops, markets, clinics and hospitals provide water and soap to wash hands.
No visitors are allowed in the hospital, with the exception of the relatives of the seriously ill.  The Chada is open, mainly for relatives of the waiters who provide extra food for them. The food is handed over at the main entrance. Planned procedures have come to a standstill, but OPD and Maternity are still busy, in spite of the fact that there is an enormous shortage of doctors and nurses. Dr Banda is hoping that volunteers will return in the autumn.
The nursing school is closed, student nurses have gone home.

Consequences for the projects
Olivia Giles mentions that her plan to send children to Lusaka for getting their prosthesis has to be postponed.
Peter Sleutelberg informs those present that the planned building and refurbishment projects of 2019 are finished. In accordance with the management the building of a new Physiotherapy building as wel as the refurbishment of the Pharmacy will be started up soon. The Dutch NGO Wilde Ganzen (Wild Geese) will co-finance this project. These are all 2020 projects.
Tim Legge is trying to raise money for a new generator. He has sent face masks for the waiters and sent money for an autoclave at Msoro Clinic.
Andrew Cairns had planned to leave for Zambia on Easter Monday, which of course he didn’t. However, his Oxygen Plant Project goes well, the plant has been ordered and should be at St Francis’ later in the year. He also is trying to raise money for the generator. The water supply at the hospital still poses a problem – very disappointing for John Western and the Logy Legacy who, some years ago, were instrumental in a big Water Project. However, the water in the compound is now metered and people are paying for their water, but ZESCO proves to be a poor supplier.

In all it was a pleasant meeting albeit that some of the participants were difficult to hear, but with the help of chairman Brian Magowan their points were made. A new meeting is considered useful by all and will be planned in the near future.


No expatriate doctors in St Francis’

Due to the Covid-19 virus all expatriate doctors and medical students have returned to their home country. There is no Covid-19 in the hospital as yet, but the hospital management is preparing for a possible outbreak. Friend of St Francis (UK) have made money available to buy PPE (Personal Protective Equipment).
On Sunday, 3 May, partners form UK, Scotland and the Netherlands will discuss the situation with the hospital management in a Zoom meeting.

St Francis’ Hospital launches free fistula treatment

St. Francis Hospital in partnership with the Fistula Foundation launched a free fistula treatment programme in Eastern Province on the 11th March, 2020.This followed a discussion and agreement between Dr. Lalick Banda and the  Fistula Foundation during the visit to Scotland. The launch was graced by Dr. Andrew Silumesi; the Director Public Health in the Ministry of Health who represented the Permanent Secretary: Dr. Kennedy Malama and was broadcasted on the national Television station. The launch also coincided with a two weeks fistula repair where over 50 women were operated upon.
St. Francis Hospital is now a treatment site for fistula in Eastern Province.

This is yet another important milestone in the provision of health services to the community and a demonstration of the confidence of Government and partners.

Read here about fistula, its cause and the life changing importance of its surgical repair.

Border Hospital Scotland – on site training in cardiac ultra sound

Dr. Paul Nearly, the cardiologist from Border Hospital in Scotland in the company of Lynn Fenn, the sonographer visited the hospital in February this year to offer on- site training in cardiac ultrasound to doctors working in internal medicine and staff from the Radiology departments.
The staff were drawn from St.Francis and Chipata Central Hospitals. The one week training was very beneficial to the staff from both hospitals and we hope it will improve the management of patients with cardiac problems.

(Left to right) Dr Paul Nearly, Mr Fred Ntongwe, Ms Lynn Fenn, Dr Lalick Banda



Namushi Kalumbi’s update on Covid-19, Friends donated for PPE

“As of yesterday, we are on 48 confirmed cases of covid-19 (April 15). I can’t really say social distancing and other preventive measures are working but rather the grace of God. It is difficult to control peoples movement in an african community due to our culture. Nonetheless, the partial lockdown has been extended to a further 14days, and yes, the council in Lusaka and other well wishers have given out d-washers and hand sanitisers to marketers and are giving public education about prevention of spread of covid-19. In Katete, shop owners have taken up the responsibility for hand washing and buckets are all over the market place. Bars and churches are closed and restaurants are only selling takeaway.

St. Francis is doing vital checks in the shelter at the roundabout and having everyone who goes in and out of the hospital to wash hands at the entrance of the hospital. Operations from outside are also to detect any possible covid suspects before they gain entry into the hospital. Suspected cases would be taken to Chipata district hospital for further investigation and if any needs ICU service, they would be taken to Petauke general hospital but we have had no suspects at St. Francis and no positive case in the whole province as yet.
Regular care has still continued.

The health care workers screening for covid at the entrance and in OPD have masks and gloves as protective wear, and a social distance of a meter is encouraged, though it’s difficult to maintain. The ministry has advised for no visitor, and no bed side visits in the hospital to reduce social contact and this may start today.

Buses are still moving across big towns but every district through the council has been mandated to disinfect everyone who comes in the district. Bus owners regularly disinfect there buses before each long trip and at least every three hours for local buses. Every passenger boarding a bus is sanitized before entering the bus and carrying capacity has been reduced to sixty percent. The traffic officers and public health officers check long trip buses at the intercity to ensure compliance to rules.

Apart from Dr Joop Jansen, there is no other Dutch muzungu doctor. We still have Dr Tim and one from I am not sure where. We also have no muzungu medical students around here.

We continue to pray for God’s mercies to be upon us”.


The Friends of St Francis’ Hospital donated money to purchase PPE (personal protective equipment. Do you want to contribute? Make a donation to the Friends:

The Royal Bank of Scotland
Sort code: 16-25-24
Account Name: FOSFKCT
Account Number: 12100963
IBAN GB71 RBOS1625 2412 1009 63
Please indicate: Purchase PPE