Durban's private hospitals top Discovery's patient survey

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Durban has six and Cape Town three of SA's top 20 private hospitals, out of 140 rated in the annual Discovery Health patient survey.

The Times reports that Cape Town has the second highest number of these hospitals with three. Johannesburg‚ Pretoria and other major cities like Nelspruit and East London only have one in the patient-care survey.

The quality of nursing care‚ doctor care‚ the hospital environment‚ pain management‚ and patient information about medication and discharge are the six major categories measured in the annual survey.

The report says the Discovery Health 2017 patient survey does not reveal which hospitals scored the highest overall but lists the top 20. Overall patient experience has improved year on year the survey‚ in its fourth year‚ shows.

The Life Healthcare group has the most hospitals in the top 20 in this survey. Doctors’ communication and management of pain are the categories that consistently scored highest. Communication with nurses and information about medication showed good improvements‚ but the planning for discharge could be better.

“Patients who are prepared well for discharge have better health outcomes‚ and are at lower risk of repeat admissions‚" said Roshini Moodley Naidoo‚ head of quality of care at Discovery Health. She said that measuring adult patient experience‚ and publicly reporting on it year on year‚ allowed them to track improvement strategies implemented by hospital management after the previous year’s survey.

“Making a patient’s experience of care visible… highlights opportunities to close certain gaps in how care is experienced by patients and families‚” said Naidoo.

A low patient experience score does not mean "a hospital does not deliver high quality care"‚ Naidoo noted‚ but it showed room for improvement. Some 2m out of 8.9m medical aid members in South Africa belong to Discovery Health.

The top 20 hospitals listed alphabetically are: Ahmed Al-Kadi Private Hospital‚ Durban; Ethekwini Hospital and Heart Centre‚ Durban; Gateway Private Hospital‚ Umhlanga; Hillcrest Private Hospital‚ Durban; Life Bay View Private Hospital‚ Mossel Bay; Life Carstenhof Hospital‚ Johannesburg; Life Chatsmed Garden Hospital‚ Chatsworth‚ Durban; Life Mount Edgecombe Hospital‚ Durban; Life Roseacres Hospital‚ Germiston; Life St Dominics Hospital‚ East London; Life Suikerbosrand Hospital‚ Heidelberg; Life West Coast Private Hospital‚ Vredenburg; Lowveld Hospital‚ Nelspruit; Mediclinic Milnerton‚ Cape Town; Mediclinic Panorama‚ Cape Town; Mediclinic Victoria‚ Tongaat; N1 City Hospital‚ Cape Town; Nu-Shifa Hospital‚ Durban; Wilmed Park Private Hospital‚ Klerksdorp; and Zuid-Afrikaans Hospital‚ Pretoria.

The Times report Discovery Health Patient Care survey 2017

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