Harry visits Mildmay Aids hospital in Shoreditch—like Princess Di before him
PUBLISHED: 07:00 14 December 2015 | UPDATED: 08:11 14 December 2015
Prince Harry visits east London’s famous Mildmay HIV hospital this-morning in the footsteps of his mother, the late Princess Diana.
He meets patients who are living with Aids and medical staff and volunteers who look after them, to mark the hospital’s 150th anniversary.
His visit is also the official opening of its purpose-built facilities at the new complex behind Shoreditch Church.
“Prince Harry’s visit is special because the Princess of Wales, his mother, showed great support for the Mildmay,” the hospital’s director Dr Ross White said. “We hope it helps raise HIV awareness and increase knowledge of our work.”
Princess Dianna made several visits to the hospital in the 1980s in her campaign to take the stigma out of Aids.
Prince Harry today sees how the hospital’s work has changed significantly in the last two-and-a-half decades since then.
Mildmay’s focus has moved from end-of-life care to rehabilitation with newly-developed anti-retroviral drugs.
It became the first dedicated hospice for those dying of Aids illnesses in 1988.
Medical advancement has now turned it into a centre for the care of people living with Aids—rather than dying from it.
The hospital today is Europe’s only centre dedicated to treatment, rehabilitation and medical care for people with complex HIV conditions, including Aids illnesses that cause of brain injury.
But its distinguished history, originally known as the Mildmay Mission Hospital, goes back to 1865 when the East End was wracked with the Cholera epidemic in Victorian London.
Queen Mary famously visited the Midmay in 1938 when the streets were crowded with hundreds of working-class East Enders who turned out to greet the Royal visitor.