A 'first' for private hospital

ON August 1, St Paul's Hospital, Hongkong, is planning to conduct a pilot study on the application of quality assurance activities to assess the current standard of medical care provided by the hospital and its group of private practitioners.

The sector chosen for the study will be the maternity and gynaecological patients.

This is the first move by any private hospital in Hongkong to realise the importance of instituting such activities as a method to identify deficiencies and point to the direction of improvement.

This is an essential part of patient care for any health institution.

During the three months of August to October, all the clinical data of the patients from this sector will be collected and the results of treatment subsequently analysed, jointly with the Hongkong College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists.

Examples of areas of study will include maternal and perinatal deaths, postoperative and neonatal morbidity, and tumour registry after cancer treatment.

On July 1, a seminar was organised in relation to this study and the response from the private doctors was very enthusiastic.

All the participants were convinced that health care personnel have the responsibility to ensure that all patients are provided with a sufficiently high quality of service.

The concern shown by St Paul's Hospital for this responsibility, I hope, will be an incentive for other private hospitals in the territory to follow.

As over 50 per cent of the health care in Hongkong is provided by such hospitals, we can predict that the people of Hongkong will benefit tremendously.

SIR ALBERT RODRIGUES Medical Superintendent St Paul's Hospital