The Ideal Hospital Framework

In 2013 the concept of an Ideal Clinic was developed by the National Department of Health to prepare for National Health Insurance (NHI) in South Africa. The Ideal Clinic is a model for an efficient and well-functioning clinic. The concept was then expanded to higher care levels i.e. hospitals.

The Ideal Hospital Framework was developed to:
  • address deficiencies in primary health care services at hospitals in South Africa,
  • support the Transformation of Health Systems policy,
  • provide a framework for public hospitals and
  • create a national parameter as a quality benchmark to standardise service levels.

The project formed part of Right to Care’s HSS programme.

Right to Care provided:
  • the funding mechanism and
  • project management expertise to coordinate role players.

A framework for hospitals

The process of developing a framework for an Ideal Hospital involved:

  • assembling a national technical team of experts,
  • developing a metric-based dashboard with:
    • a step-by-step checklist format and
    • a capability to assess service compliance across all service areas in a hospital and
  • consultation with health management committees and funders.

The technical team implemented a web-based system for easy collection and consolidation of quality assurance (QA) assessments at hospitals.

Hospital CEOs and QA managers across South Africa gave input to:

  • the Ideal Hospital Framework and
  • Implementation Guideline Project.

These will both apply to all public hospitals in the future.

Working with its partners, the Right to Care team developed:

  • An Ideal Hospital Framework Manual,
  • Step-by-step guidelines for implementation,
  • An online platform for easy operationalisation of the Ideal Hospital Framework and
  • A user guide for the Ideal Hospital web-based system.

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