A QUALITY assurance programme was introduced by the medical faculty at the Prince of Wales Hospital for the first time in Hong Kong with the aim of promoting high standards of clinical practice and patient safety.
The programme, which began in July 1990 as an on-going review of the quality of patient care, includes collection of data, clinical peer review and a review of the provision and utilisation of resources.
The objective of quality assurance is to monitor, assess, compare and, ultimately, to improve standards of professional care.
Maintaining quality also involves holding regular mortality and morbidity meetings and keeping statistics of clinical work.
In addition, reporting and evaluating incidents where patient care is compromised, help assure maintenance of exemplary standards.
Management is also reviewed, with good care noted and bad treatmentcriticised.
To carry out the programme, the medical faculty reviews the programmes of all clinical departments, with each department having its own quality assurance committee responsible for co-ordination.
In November last year, and only a few weeks ago, courtesy performance weeks were held at the hospital to acknowledge the work and dedication of staff.
These courtesy weeks also hepled to encourage hospital employees to be courteous to those seeking treatment.
For two consecutive weeks, patients and visitors were invited to nominate staff for best performance awards by voting for those whose manner and attitude were courteous and polite.
The campaign, organised four times a year, selected winners in medical, nursing, allied health, administrative/general and supporting services.
Banners and posters publicised the event. In addition, ballot boxes with nomination forms were placed at various locations.
During the November campaign, more than 780 votes were received, while, in the most recent effort, more than 500 votes were counted.