The Southern Regional Health Authority (SRHA) which administrates public healthcare in the parishes of Manchester, Clarendon and St. Elizabeth has embarked on the training of all its staff members in compassionate care, in an effort to improve the quality of public healthcare.
The training, which began in June 2018, will train some three thousand employees from all categories of the work force. Over one thousand employees have been trained so far.
The training is aligned to the Ministry of Health and Wellness’ thrust to improve the quality of service and the standard of care in public hospitals and health centres across the island, through its compassionate care programme, which was introduced in 2018. The programme was first launched in the southern region at the Black River Hospital in St. Elizabeth on September 20, 2018.
According to Director of Human Resource Management and Industrial Relations at the SRHA, Mrs. Nicolette Thomas Edwards, staff members are trained in areas of positive leadership, customer service, responsible stewardship, cultural change, accountability, patient focus, effective and efficient use of resources in addition to raising the standard of service.
She explained that the SRHA is anticipating several outcomes including: patient compliance, patient satisfaction, a positive patient experience, improvement in waiting time, greater responsiveness to the needs of patients and also confidence from the community and patients in the public health facilities.
“We are also hoping to motivate the staff through these trainings, create less stressful working environments and achieve greater trust among staff and between patients and service providers” Mrs. Thomas Edwards added.
Mrs. Thomas Edwards noted that evaluation of the training has commenced through customer service satisfaction surveys, to evaluate the impact of the training and obtain feedback from customers.
The Human Resource Management Director pointed out that as part of the training, staff members are informed and reminded of the available benefits and how they can access assistance through the organization’s staff welfare initiatives.
The compassionate care programme comprises three components including training of staff and enhancing basic infrastructure including waiting areas to ensure that patients wait in areas of comfort with pictorial messages of advice and encouragement; refurbished bathrooms, installation of air conditioning and the placement of a television set to display health messages. The third component is volunteerism, which seeks to boost partnerships and engage Jamaicans in offering compassionate care with the supervision of staff.
The renovated waiting area of the Black River Health Centre which was re-opened on May 2, 2019.
The design representing the CARE philosophy to costomers. Pictured at left is the 2018 Top Porter for the Mandeville Regional Hospital, Mr. Leroy Bailey, who is also a member of the SRHA CARE Committee.
Staff members at a recent compassionate care training being conducted by Director of Human Resource Management and Industrial Relations at the SRHA, Mrs. Nicolette Thomas Edwards.