The Netcare Christiaan Barnard Memorial Hospital opened its doors to patients at their new custom-designed 16-storey facility on Cape Town’s foreshore on Tuesday.
Chief executive of Netcare Dr Richard Friedland said: “With the opening, our vision of a world-class healthcare facility reflecting the spirit of excellence, innovation and sanctity of life cherished by the hospital’s namesake, Professor Christiaan Barnard, became a reality.
“We look forward to this new chapter in the hospital’s unfolding story, which has thus far been rich in leading-edge medical advances,” Dr Friedland said.
The hospital’s official launch was celebrated earlier in December to coincide with the 49th anniversary of the world’s first human heart transplant, and tribute was paid to that historic moment at the event.
The launch was attended by a number of dignitaries, including the MEC for Health in the Western Cape, Dr Nomafrench Mbombo, Cape Town deputy mayor Alderman Ian Neilson, members of the late Professor Barnard’s family, and surviving members of the first human heart transplant team, among others.
Mbombo and the deputy chairperson of the Netcare board of directors, Thevendrie Brewer, unveiled a plaque dedicated to the memory of Professor Barnard in the hospital foyer.
The plaque reads: “Professor Christiaan Barnard achieved international fame for expanding the boundaries of medicine. Barnard was not only committed to furthering medical science, he was also deeply committed to patient care. In this exhibition, Netcare honours Barnard the man, and pays tribute to the principles he stood for: science in service of humanity, and patient care in service of the individual. This exhibition is also for all the unsung champions of the healthcare profession. Those who dedicate their lives to these principles; serving the health and wellbeing of the individual to make our world a better place.”
The new hospital is located on Cape Town’s Foreshore, a short distance away from the old premises in the city CBD.
– African News Agency