Experts call for stress on patients’ safety


‘State should tighten screws on hospitals flouting norms’

The need for strict enforcement of the legislations governing hospitals and other health-care establishments for ensuring safety of patients was stressed on the eve of the World Patient Safety Day (December 9).

The government should tighten the screws on hospitals resorting to blatant violation of norms thereby protect the health of patients. A major threat to patients is hospital-acquired infections. This is sought to be prevented but it is easier said than done as the diagnostic and treatment protocols are followed in just a few hospitals and clinics.

It is estimated that 10 per cent of those admitted to hospitals are afflicted with infections that spread from their attendants, doctors, paramedical staff and fellow patients. In addition to the infections acquired in hospitals, there are many other issues of public concern to be addressed by the governments, which alone can accomplish the task in view of its magnitude. NTR University of Health Sciences Vice-Chancellor T. Ravi Raju told The Hindu the governments have little control over several things that endanger the safety of patients while the common people were falling prey to unethical practices that pervade the health care system in India.

Free availability of OTC (over the counter) drugs and indiscriminate / over prescriptions (of drugs) posed a serious threat to public health.

Dr. Raju said in western countries the prescriptions given by doctors are crosschecked by pharmacists for possible drug interactions and returned for giving proper medication if complications are anticipated. Only strict implementation of the A.P Medical Care Establishments (Registration and Regulation) Act would curb the menace, Dr. Raju observed.

Several corporate and private hospitals making investments to acquire the NABH accreditation which demands stringent standards and patient safety protocols is an encouraging trend.

Three hospitals have acquired the certification in the city which is emerging as health-care hub of the new state. One hospital has set for itself a target to acquire the Joint Commission International (JCI) accreditation which is recognised in 100 countries the world over. JCI has very high standards of patient safety.

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Printable version | Jan 23, 2020 7:47:20 AM |

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