For almost as long as The Salvation Army has existed, it has operated hospitals and clinics in some of the most needy areas of the world. That remains true today.

The Salvation Army's medical services are most effective, influential and sustainable when they link to health-related community development, which gives local people – Salvationists and others – the opportunity to participate.

The international vision statement for health ministry says:

The Salvation Army seeks to be a significant participant in the delivery of faith-based, integrated, quality primary health care as close to the family as possible giving priority to poor and marginalised members of society. The Salvation Army offers education programmes that equip health workers with appropriate skills and experience as well as developing commitment to holistic Christian health ministry.

A satellite clinic in Swaziland
The Salvation Army works in 131 countries and in every country, Salvationists respond to the health concerns in their communities. In addition to church-based programmes, The Salvation Army currently has 172 health facilities in 37 countries, focusing on healthcare and the prevention of disease. These include 38 hospitals and more than 134 clinics and health posts, as well as a number of mobile clinics either attached to our health facilities or running out of out Territorial or Command Headquarters. Last year these health facilities cares for 237,569 in-patients and 1,454,233 out-patients.

The Salvation Army around the world provide profession training through 14 nursing and midwifery Schools and one laboratory training school.

The different Salvation Army health care facilities provide care covering a range of different conditions, in line with the needs within their geographic location. The types of services provided included, in 2017:

  • In our hospitals we cared for 181,348 inpatients, 503,786 in out-patients and 818,552 repeat visits.
  • In our clinics we attended to 338,064 new out-patients and 608,809 repeat visits.
  • 82,572 pregnant women attended their first antenatal clinic visit in one of our centres.

Services provided

  • Maternal and child health services
  • Sexual and reproductive health
  • Detection and management of communicable disease e.g. HIV and AIDS, tuberculosis and leprosy
  • Detection, monitoring and management of non-communicable conditions e.g. diabetes and hypertension
  • Early detection and management of cancers
  • Emergency care
  • Infectious diseases e.g malaria, cholera, bilharzia
  • Ophthalmology
  • Dental services
  • Kidney diseases including renal dialysis
  • General surgery
  • Nutrition advice and management
  • End-of-life care
  • Mental health issues
  • Rehabilitation and physiotherapy

We encourage local communities to respond to health issues, to increase their capacity to care, change and develop healthy communities and to have hope and a knowledge of the grace of God in Christ.

The International Health Services – part of the Programme Resources Department at The Salvation Army’s International Headquarters – supports and encourages the development of health services throughout the world where The Salvation Army operates, and influences the development of local and international partnerships.