The effects of stroke can be devastating, resulting in death or disability, especially in developing countries like Malawi where stroke is the third leading cause of death. In Malawi, stroke most commonly occurs when people are in their 40s or 50s and providing for their families.
Currently, there is a GLOBAL HEALTH CRISIS IN STROKE with the number of people having and dying from strokes across the world is increasing, especially in developing countries like Malawi.
We are a partnership between University College London and Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital, Blantyre that is currently setting up the first ever stroke unit in Malawi. It will also be the first such unit in that part of southern Africa, and we hope will serve as a model service for the region.
Stroke units are simple organisational structures which transformed stroke care in the UK 15-20 years ago, and have led in Europe to a massive improvement in survival and reduction in disability from stroke. We will be working on the whole stroke pathway from prevention to rehabilitation in a way that is culturally appropriate and sensitive to the limited resources of this very poor country. The potential to transform outcomes in Malawi via this approach is enormous.