Plans have been announced for the construction of a new JFK hospital in Monrovia, the government’s largest referral hospital. According to President George Manneh Weah, the hospital will be built right on the premises of the existing John F. Kennedy Memorial Hospital (JFK) in Sinkor, Monrovia.
President Weah disclosed the news on Monday during interactions with the people of Montserrado County as part of the completion of his nationwide tour that began in February of last year.
According to Weah, the New JFK hospital is intended to strengthen the nation’s health system, which has had difficulties over the years. He stated that it is his goal to keep Liberia developing while pointing out that the process has just begun.
In his quest to strengthen the nation’s healthcare system, he cites the 14th Military Hospital, the recently finished Emirate Hospital in Gbarpolu County, and the renovated Jackson F. Doe Hospital in Tappita, Nimba County. He also listed other important goals of his government, including electricity, road connection, and education.
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Remarks on the Proposed JFK Hospital
Weah reiterated, “I am a development-oriented leader, I urge you to be patient and we will grow Liberia together”.
He emphasized that since health is wealth, his government will make every effort to keep the health sector improving.
“More health infrastructure has been built by my administration than by any other government, and we’ll continue to work harder for our citizens. Furthermore, We will construct the new JFK hospital next to the existing JFK. When that happens, it will be two JFKs, and you know how ambitious we are about keeping Liberia developing,” President Weah continued.
Former Liberian President William V.S. Tubman, whose 1961 meeting with U.S. President John F. Kennedy lay the framework for USAID funding for a national medical institution in Liberia, requested the construction of the John F. Kennedy Memorial Medical Center.
A loan of US$6.8 million and grants from USAID totaling US$9.2 million were used to fund the project. The initiative received a $1 million contribution from the Liberian government.
The facility was built in 1965 and made public in 1971. However, the Liberian Legislature legally constituted it as a separate government body in 1972. In 1978, Liberia acquired from the Americans all operational rights.
The JFK Hospital is still the biggest referral center in Liberia despite suffering significant damage during the Liberian Civil War.