Abu Dhabi hospital rating system will boost medical tourism

 

Hospital deaths and readmission rates have fallen in Abu Dhabi hospitals since Jawda, the rating system that scrutinises poor performers, came into force in 2014.

Under the scheme, hospitals are rated according to more than 100 indicators including patient safety, effectiveness of care, waiting time and the level of treatment provided.

At the recent International Patient Experience Symposium in Abu Dhabi, Dr Al Mannaei shared some of the improvements that showed why the patient-centric Jawda system worked.

"In a year, the number of deaths due to heart attacks outside critical care centres have reduced by 50%. Pressure ulcers and bed sores have gone down by 31%, unplanned readmission rates have gone down by 20% and medical complications because of surgery have decreased 60%."

She said the improvements made the UAE a serious contender for medical tourism.

"We offer personalised medicine; excellent medical services; and, geographically, the UAE is an ideal medical tourist destination."

From next year, Jawda data will be accessible to the public to help them decide which hospital best suits their needs.

If a hospital ranks below standard or fails in any of the indicators for a specific case, its management and the patient involved are contacted. In cases of medical malpractice or negligence, the department takes immediate action. Jawda data will help patients and hospitals by giving medical centres tangible feedback.

"The department of health has mandated the collection of data on patient experience so we know where we are," said Majd Abu Zant, chief operating officer of United Eastern Medical Services and chief executive of HealthPlus Network of Specialty Centres.

Against regional benchmarks the UAE ranks highly, but internationally there is still room for growth.

"The UAE is lower than international benchmarks except in one criterion; satisfaction of clinical competence, which is the satisfaction of patients with the quality of care delivered by healthcare professionals," said Mr Abu Zant. "In many areas the level of satisfaction with the doctors in the UAE is higher than the US.

"That was not the trend here 10 years ago … but because of the dynamic situation of the UAE and because it has attracted so many competent individuals from all over the world … we now have the proper level of talent required to meet patients’ expectations."

View the UAE IMTJ Country Profile for the latest in-depth, independent analysis of medical tourism to Abu Dhabi.

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