Burdened with challenges of worsening morbidity and mortality rates, Nigeria’s healthcare sector should rise up to the demand for equity, transparency and accountability in healthcare delivery by enthroning clinical governance frameworks. This was the charge by Dr. Ademolu Owoyele, managing consultant with Harley and Wall Consulting, an international healthcare and business consulting firm.
As governments at the state and federal levels increase efforts to improve the physical structures and ambience in health facilities, the most important critical success factor to healthcare quality, patient-cantered care and reduction in morbidity and mortality is the human component, he said. To achieve this, healthcare workers need to be imparted with the right attitude, culture, knowledge and skills to give the right care through clinical governance and total quality management principles, Dr. Owoyele said.
The Harley and Wall boss defined clinical governance as a framework through which health facilities create an environment in which excellence in clinical care can flourish by continuously improving the quality of their services and safe-guarding high standards of care. He listed the seven pillars of clinical governance to include clinical effectiveness, risk management, patient experience and involvement, communication, resource effectiveness, clinical audit, and learning effectiveness. In short, clinical governance structure ensures that the hospital system is doing the right thing, at the right time, by the right person, he said.
He said: “With a clinical governance framework and structure in place in most hospitals, our hospitals would be able to compare their current practice with global best practice based on evidence-based medicine through a well implemented clinical audit system. But a new system such as this can only function where there is a strong leadership and management commitment as a shift in paradigm, change management and cultural change is required for implementation among all healthcare workers. Clinical governance and total quality management institutes a proactive and learning health system for continuous monitoring and improvement by promoting global best–in–class clinical practice, risk management and quality compliance standards.”