Hospital Ship Papa Francisco (C) CELAM

Brazil: Pope Francis’ Hospital Ship Fights Against Coronavirus

Brings Health and Hope

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The Latin American Episcopal Council (CELAM) reported in a note that Pope Francis’ Hospital Ship has entered the fight against the coronavirus in Brazil.

The ship, born of a suggestion in 2013 of the Holy Father and Friar Francisco Belotti, of the Saint Francis Fraternity of Rio de Janeiro, is taking medical and sanitary aid to coastal populations and to the tropical Amazon jungle.

The ship has been crossing the waters of the Amazon River since September 2019. It was inaugurated in July and in August it was already rendering services in Obidos and Belem.

Since then, 46,000 services have been carried out, distributed in municipalities along the Amazon River (Alenquer, Almerim, Belterra, Curua, Faro, Juruti, Monte Alegre, Obidos, Oriximina, Prainha, Santarem and Terra Santa).

Fight against Coronavirus

 In an interview featured on the portal of the National Conference of Bishops of Brazil (NCBB), Friar Joel Sousa, who is part of the ship’s Coordination Committee, marked the first anniversary of this project in the life of the Amazonian people. “This ship has already wrought great miracles in the life of our riverine people, bringing health and hope,” he said.

During the COVID-19 crisis, the ship could do no more than offering help to the neediest. ”We couldn’t be out of this fight. We united and organized our service so that together we could also fight against COVID-19,” explained Friar Joel.

Clinical Care and Awareness

 In addition, the Friar explained that the work of Pope Francis’ ship is being carried out with the support of health professionals through clinical care.

The crew onboard also co-operates by making the people aware. “We are taking care of primarily flu symptoms and light COVID-10 symptoms in outside patients. The doctor does the consultations and we also hand out medications, together with the local Department of Health,” he concluded.


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Larissa I. López

Larissa I. López es licenciada en Comunicación Audiovisual por la Universidad de Sevilla, Máster en Artes de la Comunicación Corporativa y Doctora en Comunicación por la Universidad CEU San Pablo de Madrid. Su trayectoria profesional ha transcurrido entre el ámbito de la comunicación y el de la docencia. Como redactora, ha colaborado con medios como Aceprensa, Pantalla 90 o CinemaNet. Como profesora ha impartido clases en la universidad y en centros de FP y bachillerato. En estos últimos realizaba también tareas relacionadas con la comunicación (redes sociales y edición de contenidos). Cordobesa de nacimiento también ha vivido en Sevilla, Madrid y Roma.

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