Johannesburg will become home to the fourth children's hospital in Africa.
The hospital, which will offer specialised paediatric healthcare services to 14 countries in Southern Africa, will be built at either the Memorial Institute for Child Health and Development, Chris Hani-Baragwanath Hospital or the Wits Education Campus.
The brainchild of the Nelson Mandela Children's Fund, construction will start next year once an appropriate site had been chosen, said fund spokesman Oupa Ngwenya.
"As an economic and transportation hub, Johannesburg is the most favoured city in the SADC region.
"The hospital is most likely to be built at the Wits campus because the site offers an opportunity for expansion," said Ngwenya.
The hospital is expected to be completed in 2012.
Ngwenya said there was a need for child-centred facilities in Africa.
"The hospital will act as a referral unit and will recruit specialists from all over the world. It will also serve as a training centre for young doctors," said Ngwenya.
It would run centres of excellence in cancer treatment, cardiothoracic surgery, diabetes and the correction of craniofacial disorders.
Ngwenya said Africa was lagging behind in providing specialised paediatric healthcare. The continent has three children's hospitals - Red Cross Children's Hospital in Cape Town and two in Egypt.