MALALA YOUSUFZAI WAS discharged from a UK hospital yesterday and will now be treated as an outpatient.
The Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham, where the 15-year-old had been recuperating from injuries received during a shooting in Pakistan, said she will continue her rehabilitation at her family’s temporary home in the West Midlands.
A statement issued today explained that the patient was “well enough” to to be treated by the hospital as an outpatient for the next few weeks.
Over the past couple of weeks Malala has been leaving the hospital on a regular basis on “home leave” to spend time with her father Ziauddin, mother Toorpekai and younger brothers, Khushal and Atul. During those visits assessments have been carried out by her medical team to ensure she can continue to make good progress outside the hospital.
She will be readmitted at the end of this month (or the beginning of February) to undergo cranial reconstructive surgery, a development made public just this week.
“Malala is a strong young woman and has worked hard with the people caring for her to make excellent progress in her recovery,” said Dr Dave Rosser, the medical director at University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust.
“Following discussions with Malala and her medical team, we decided that she would benefit from being at home with her parents and two brothers. She will return to the hospital as an outpatient and our Therapies team will continue to work with her at home to supervise her onward care.”
British Foreign Secretary William Hague tweeted: “Delighted Malala is well enough to leave hospital. The future Pakistan she dreams of is one we must support.”
The girls’ rights activist was brought to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham on 15 October after Taliban gunmen shot her in the head as she travelled on a school bus in the northwestern district of Swat.
Malala first rose to prominence in 2009, aged just 11, through her blog for the BBC Urdu service. In her posts, she described life in Swat during the bloody rule of the Taliban.
Her calls for improved education for girls attracted the attention of the Taliban, ultimately leading to the attempt on her life.