The Nigerian government has developed the National Policy and Implementation Strategy on Patient Safety and Quality of Healthcare.
The development, the government said, is part of efforts to improve the safety of all medical procedures and improve the quality of healthcare delivery.
This was revealed by the Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Health, Kachollom Daju, at a press conference in Abuja on Monday.
At the briefing, which took place in commemoration of World Patient Safety Day 2023, Ms Daju said the national policy is in line with resolution 18 of the 55th World Health Assembly, which called for member states to recognize the burden of patient safety and establish policies to manage them.
“I am pleased to inform you that the Federal Ministry of Health has just developed the first National Policy and Implementation Strategy on Patient Safety and Quality of Care, which was sent for stakeholder review last week on Thursday and Friday,” he said. .
“This policy focuses on improving patient and family engagement in healthcare, medication safety, surgical safety, infection prevention and control, safety of all medical procedures, and others.”
He said the federal government is hopeful that healthcare facilities at all levels will adopt and implement this policy.
He pointed out that patient safety fundamentally involves preventing errors and minimizing harm to patients during the provision of health services.
World Patient Safety Day
World Patient Safety Day is celebrated on September 17 every year to raise awareness about patient safety globally.
The theme of this year’s commemoration is: “Engaging Patients for Patient Safety,” in recognition of the crucial role patients, families and caregivers play in safe healthcare.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), around one in 10 patients suffer harm in healthcare and more than three million deaths occur annually due to unsafe care.
The world body noted that in low- to middle-income countries, up to four in 100 people die due to unsafe care.
The permanent secretary said the day underlines the importance of patient safety in the healthcare system.
He said empowering patients to become integral members of their healthcare team is a crucial avenue to significantly improve the safety of their care and the healthcare system as a whole.
He noted that patients can make great contributions when they actively participate in their health care decisions.
“Under the motto ‘Raising the voice of patients’, WHO calls on all stakeholders to take necessary measures to ensure that patients are not just passive recipients of healthcare but active participants,” he said.
“This includes involving them in policy formulation, representation in governance structures, co-designing security strategies and making them partners in their own care.”
He said the government is committed to providing safer and higher quality health services to everyone in the country, strengthening the health system and building trust among citizens.
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The WHO said evidence shows that when patients are treated as partners in their care, significant gains are made in safety, patient satisfaction and health outcomes.
Speaking at the event, WHO country representative Walter Mulombo said that more than 50 percent of the harm patients experience can be prevented if concerted efforts are made and the necessary investments are made.
Mulombo said several countries in the African region have developed and are implementing the policy, including action plans for patient safety, as well as other safety interventions, such as infection prevention and control, to make healthcare Safer.
In his comments, Director of Hospital Services, Jimoh Salaudeen, urges stakeholders to take necessary steps to ensure that patients are involved in policy formulation, represented in governance structures, involved in co-designing strategies and be active partners in their own care. .
Salaudeen said this can only be achieved by providing platforms and opportunities for diverse patients, families and communities to raise their voices, concerns, expectations and preferences to promote safety, patient-centeredness, reliability and equity.