In 2014, Right to Care Health Services identified the need to methodically document, evaluate, and share the best practices, clinical principles, and innovations arising from the organisation’s programmes. The organisation established a dedicated operational research unit meet these needs. Many of unit’s solutions have resulted in a significant positive change to clinic functioning and the lives of patients.
The unit’s strategy is to develop key questions that need to be evaluated regarding patient care, innovations, and programme outcomes. Projects are conceptualised and proposals evaluated by a scientific board after acceptance protocols are written and studies planned. Several projects have been developed in the TB, Cervical Cancer, Paediatric, Prevention, and Pharmacy departments.
The findings of a completed study are disseminated to stakeholders at universities, in the press, funders, the Department of Health, and the World Health Organisation.
Right to Care is involved in over 35 projects, involving a wide range of programmes.
One project assisted the National Department of Health in analysing clinical data. This data enabled the Medicines Control Council to approve the TB drug bedaquiline. The research staff working in partnership with Dr Francesca Conradie, Right to Care’s former TB Clinical Advisor, were also significantly involved in the writing of the policy for the use of bedaquiline and linezolid for drug-resistant TB.
We are involved in innovative technology for human papillomavirus (HPV) diagnosis, costing of sample collection devices, and improving treatment in women with cervical dysplasia.
Clinical observations of significant side effects of HIV medications in the paediatric population have led to the development of a proposed study to look at possible interventions that may improve adherence to medication and clinic visits.