The US$20 million Kigutu Hospital and Women’s Health Pavilion is the latest phase in a project transforming the remote mountain village of Kigutu into a centre of community-driven health care and education that is being delivered by Village Health Works (VHW) and will bring high quality surgical capacity to rural Burundi.

The medical facility is now in the final stages of construction. When completed, it will provide essential and emergency obstetrics and surgical care.

FBW Group was involved as project manager and lead designer in the detailed design stages of the development and is proud to have played a part in the successful delivery of the project to date. FBW, which has offices in Uganda, Kenya and Rwanda, has helped deliver health projects in Africa, many in remote rural areas, for more than 25 years.

One in 23 women die during pregnancy or childbirth in Burundi, where 80% of the population lives on under $1 a day.

Once open, women will be able to give birth safely in a dignified environment, with access to immediate c-sections and other services to increase the safety of both mother and child.

The Kigutu Hospital and Women’s Health Pavilion will have seven delivery rooms, a prenatal and postnatal ward, a neonatal intensive care unit, nursery, general and malnutrition wards. It will also have an emergency room.

As well as saving lives and reducing needless suffering the facility will provide an excellent training and education environment for Burundian healthcare professionals, helping retain talent in the country.

Village Health Works is a New York-based non-profit organisation founded by Deogratias ‘Deo’ Niyizonkiza, an American citizen and medical doctor born in rural Burundi, who has become an inspirational voice in global health and international development.

Village Health Works has turned this area of Burundi into a bustling campus which serves a catchment area of 200,000 people.

The project began in 2005 when Deo travelled back to Burundi to establish VHW, with the goal of creating a healthcare system model in Kigutu.

Thanks to community-donated land, a small amount of seed money from American fellow students and supporters and the work of volunteers, the centre opened its doors to the community in December 2007.

FBW Group managing director Paul Moores said: “It’s fantastic to see that work on the Kigutu Hospital and Women’s Health Pavilion is progressing.

“It is a testament to the dedication, drive and determination of VHW and the team behind the project.

“This is a truly transformational development for Burundi and its people, delivering first-world quality health services to a remote part of rural Africa.

“The Women’s Health Pavilion will provide vital care for women and children in the region. It is a true ‘game changer’ in health services for Burundi and we’re proud to have played some part in its creation.”

Picture Credit: BERGEN STREET STUDIO

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