The first course of action was in 1961 when the Executive Officer of the Ukinga tribe (chief) Mr. Kiluswa asked the Consolata Missionaries to build a hospital in the Ukinga area. In his request, he stressed that there was a medical shortage in that area and many children were dying at a young age.
After several meetings with the authorities, on November 30, 1961 the Ministry of Health and the Labor Officer approved the request to establish a hospital in the village of Ikonda. At the end of 1963 construction began: first the house of the missionary fathers, 4 houses to welcome the relatives of the sick, and a water pump. From 1964 to 1968 the hospital structure was progressively improved and expanded to a capacity of 60 beds.
In February 1968 the first Italian doctor arrived and on October 7th of the same year Mwalimu Julius Nierere President of Tanzania came to open the hospital. In 1974 new wards were added: the pediatric ward with 40 beds and a program focusing on infant mortality reduction. Overall hygienic conditions dramatically improved. New spaces for outpatient visits. Homes for local new doctors. And a sterilizing machine. The hospital continued to expand and in 1983 reached a capacity of 180 beds.
From 1996 to 2000 several foreign doctors worked in Ikonda: a Cuban surgeon and several Spanish doctors. At that time, the Spanish Medicus Mundi body allocated funds for the construction of the School for Laboratory Technicians. It was very well equipped, and it trained over 75 students each year. Since 2000 the hospital has been run by local doctors as the services of expatriate doctors became unavailable.
In 2004 the hospital started a program for patients with HIV & AIDS and in 2007 more than 15,000 people attended that clinic which received great support from a German doctor Gerold Jagher.
The period between 2002 and 2008 saw great improvements in the hospital structure and in the health services provided. New specialized departments were added. Imaging and diagnostic services modernized. To ensure that the hospital could continue to operate at its best standards a new septic tanks, new pipes for clean running water, internal and external speakers, and a laundry department were also built. Crucially two backup generators well suited to the increased demand were installed to provide consistent power supply.
These structural and technical betterments have been critical to the Consolata Hospital Ikonda successful story, yet the ongoing collaboration with visiting volunteer doctors and nurses is a vital pillar of our institution.