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Improving Healthcare in Rural Zambia and the Congo

Sachibondu Hospital
Northwest Region, Zambia, Africa

“The Sachibondu Hospital will provide an unprecedented and invaluable quality of healthcare to thousands across this region of Zambia and the Congo, and your help has been such a significant part of our journey.”

James Mitchell
Director, Orkidstudio

HOK team members in London and San Francisco collaborated to help shape the design of a new hospital that will improve the quality of care in a remote corner of Africa.

The new Sachibondu Hospital is being developed by Orkidstudio, a humanitarian design organization focused on improving communities worldwide through innovative architecture, construction and social enterprise.

The goal for the project is to expand the only healthcare facility accessible to tens of thousands of people in a remote region. Some individuals walk for days to receive treatment at the current hospital, which lacks adequate space, infrastructure and healthcare resources.

The building design attempts to optimize the health and well-being of patients and staff. Carefully placed adjacencies and clinical functions provide clear wayfinding while minimizing travel distances.

The team conducted natural ventilation studies and developed passive strategies for increasing internal air-change rates and ensuring that fresh air is delivered to all spaces. Perforated walls and vegetation provide privacy and shading while creating cool breezes. The passive cooling studies also confirmed the ideal location of isolated wards for maximum infection control.

Solar studies helped the team refine the design and placement of shading devices to control heat gain and to leverage natural light, reducing the hospital’s reliance on electricity, which often is unavailable. A feasibility study evaluated the potential to generate off-site renewable energy through the use of photovoltaic panels and a hydroelectric dam. 

The hospital will include an outpatient department with EPI facilities, X-Ray room and scanning equipment, a full operating theater, an extensive inpatient ward department, a TB and infectious diseases isolation ward and a maternity care ward.

Built using sustainable practices and materials, the project has engaged the community in the construction process and created new educational and training opportunities. The upgraded facilities will meet government requirements for a first-level hospital, which will attract more funding and staff resources from the Ministry of Health. 

HOK provided peer review design recommendations for medical planning, sustainability consulting, engineering consulting and liaison management. The team also has supported fundraising efforts.


Engineering Consulting
Fundraising Support
Liaison Management
Medical Planning
Sustainability Consulting


25,800 sq. ft / 2,400 sq. m


3 October 2017
“Orkidstudio’s Dedication to Social Impact and Architecture”