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Title: Exploring patient centered care at St. Luke's Hospital.
Authors: Camilleri, Silvio
Keywords: Medical care -- Malta
Hospital care -- Malta
Patient-centered health care -- Malta
Issue Date: 2005
Citation: Camilleri, S. (2005). Exploring patient centered care at St. Luke's Hospital (Master's dissertation).
Abstract: This study aimed to explore the issue of patient centred care in the main hospital of the Maltese Islands. To reach such an aim, the researcher opted for the use of three tools, a survey, interviews and an observation phase. With this choice it was possible to perform triangulation of findings and have better and more reliable results. The survey consisted in querying recently discharged patients about various aspects of their experience within the hospital. The interviews performed were of the elite type and investigated how the organisation perceived the patient centred care agenda with all its interlinking aspects. The observation phase was performed within the ward setting of the hospital, to observe the organisational climate as regards patient centred care and document various interactions, related with this type of care. The main findings of this study were that patient centred care is practiced at a moderate level within St.Luke's Hospital (SLH). Findings seem to indicate that such care is affected by the age of the patient and also the speciality with which the patient had contact whilst in hospital. It was noted that orthopaedic wards faired better then surgical and medical wards in that order. Also, statistical significance was found between the age of the patients and their relative perception as regards patient centred care. Results indicated that the older the age of the patient, the less the perception that they were receiving patient centred care. From the results of the interviews, it was concluded that organisational members had a good knowledge of the term patient centred care but each gave a personalised interpretation of the concept which most often reflected the professional background of the respondent. When queried about the commitment towards this agenda, the respondents sustained that there is commitment towards patient centred care within SLH. However, from the interviews it was noted that barriers exist for this type of care which were identified as being of multiple nature. The main ones which were given prominence by the respondents included, overcrowding problems, lack of coordination between professions, ward environment, financial issues and barriers constituted by cultural aspects. The observation phase confirmed most barriers identified by the respondents and documented the day by day work of the staff within four different wards for a total observation time of sixteen hours. Various aspects of the wards were documented with the main themes being that of the actual physical environment of the wards and also the interaction between the staff of the ward, mainly doctors and nurses with the patients. It was observed that certain aspects of the physical environment hinder patient centred care, whilst overall the interaction between staff and the patients was satisfactory. Given the findings, various recommendations to management were proposed with the main ones being a needs assessment to analyse the problem of overdemand at SLH, the setting up of a Customer Care Department and also a substantial improvement in the physical environment of the wards. Only after such recommendations are put into practice can the agenda of patient centred care be given sufficient impetus within SLH to effect policies and strategic managerial decisions.
Appears in Collections:Dissertations - FacHSc - 2005
Dissertations - FacHScHSM - 2005

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