Nyadire Mission Hospital

Nyadire Mission Hospital

Long-time Methodist medical mission Dr. Samuel Gurney was the driving force in establishing the Nyadiri Mission.  “The crowning days in Dr. Gurney’s work” was the building of the Nyadire Mission Hospital begun in 1923.

The hospital was initially named the Washburn Memorial Hospital in honor of a gift by Mrs. Washburn, which made its construction possible.  With the help of Rev. L. W. Tull, Dr. Gurney oversaw the construction of a 30’ x 40’ dispensary, several detached rooms for patients and a doctor’s residence. Unfortunately, Dr. Gurney became ill in August, 1924 and never saw its completion before his death.

Dr. Gurney was replaced by Dr. Montgomery beginning August 1925.  He was joined by Miss. Ona Parmenter, who assumed responsibility for medical work at Nyadiri when Dr. Montgomery left in December of 1927.  By the year ending June 1928, the hospital had treated a total of 400 in-patients and 4,222 out patients.

In 1940, Dr. A. G. Anderson was transferred from Korea to Nyadiri.  After his arrival, construction of a new hospital, consisting of eighteen beds, a room for clinical work, a surgical theatre and an obstetric ward, was completed. By 1942 he received Government permission to begin training African nurses at the mission hospital beginning in 1942.

One of the diseases that Dr. Anderson and his staff treated at Nyadiri was bilharzia, which was widespread among the students due to the fact that the students had nowhere to wash except in the nearby river.

Dr. G. Downie and Dr. William H. Wickett served at Nyadire in the early 1960’s.  The hospital currently serves about 150,000 patients a year. The Nyadire Nurse’s Training School is presently the largest such school in Zimbabwe.  Graduates receive the title of Primary Care Nurse that is similar to a Licensed Practical Nurse in the U.S.