The state government's claim of providing quality healthcare notwithstanding, none of the government hospitals in Punjab have been granted accreditation ever since National Accreditation Board for Healthcare (NABH) was incepted nearly eight years ago.
Talking to reporters on the sidelines of giving NABH Safe-I accreditation for infection control to city's Tagore Hospital here on Monday, NABH director Dr Gayatri Vyas Mahindroo said that though five government hospitals situated at Jalandhar, Amritsar, Patiala, Mohali and Bathinda had applied for the accreditation, but these were asked to first submit the feasibility report.
"It is a pity that no government hospital of the state was up to the mark to reach the standards for accreditation. We are going to meet government health officials and ask them to maintain the standards in quality healthcare,” she added.
While the Tagore Hospital has become the first hospital in the region to fetch NABH Safe-I accreditation, the government hospitals were yet to start the process, thus, depriving the patients of choice to select them on the basis of assured quality healthcare.
"There is need for the government hospitals to come forward to get accredited so that patients especially those belonging to poor families will be able to get assured quality treatment in otherwise low cost government hospitals," she added.
She said that 170 hospitals in the country have been granted accreditation, of which 15% were private, 20 small healthcare organisations and 55 blood banks. She said that the NABH peer teams would conduct monthly assessment and monitoring of the accredited hospitals to ensure that they adhere to prescribed standards.
Meanwhile, Dr Vijay Mahajan, CEO, Tagore Hospital, said that their hospital was the first hospital to get this certification in the country India out of 21 hospitals undergoing the NABH Safe-I accreditation programme being conducted by NABH and Becton Dickinson (BD), India.
“Under this programme, NABH recommends safe injection and infusion practices, biomedical waste management, healthcare workers safety and sterilisation and disinfection. It also provides a consultant to help applicants build capability to run a robust infection control programme, providing training content and surveillance tools as well as conducting assessment,” Dr Mahajan said.
Dr Gayatri added that NABH and BD joined hands in 2012 to support hospitals in attaining quality-of-care standards for infection control. "This collaboration was an effort to strengthen health systems in India and promote continuous quality improvement to ensure quality healthcare for patients in hospitals with effective infection control practices in place,” she added.