Adapting the WHO Health Promoting Hospitals strategy for South African hospitals : an evaluation.
Geddes, Rosemary Veronica.
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Objective To conduct an evaluation of the pilot implementation of the World Health Organization Health Promoting Hospitals initiative and its self-assessment tool in public hospitals in KwaZulu-Natal in 2004/2005 Study design This evaluation utilised a cross-sectional design that incorporated both qualitative and quantitative research methods. Main measures Throughout the Health Promoting Hospital pilot project the opinions and responses of those with a legitimate interest in the initiative were monitored. Data collection methods utilised in this evaluation included participant observation, the World Health Organisation metaevaluation questionnaire, records of workshops and feedback meetings and secondary analysis of all data collected by the six pilot hospitals during the implementation of the project in KwaZulu-Natal. Results Major constraints were found to be time, human and financial resources, lack of training and expertise and insufficient support for the project. The self-assessment tool was found to be insufficiently adapted and not all outcomes were found to be reliable and useful. Despite this, institutional staff found the Health Promoting Hospital project to be capacity building and morale boosting. Relationships between health service levels improved. All hospitals who participated recommended that other hospitals become Health Promoting Hospitals. Conclusion If the World Health Organisation Health Promoting Hospital initiative with its selfassessment tool is to be rolled out to the rest of KwaZulu-Natal province, then substantial changes have to be made to the process. Amongst these are: further adaptation of the selfassessment tool, improved methods of data collection, provision of sufficient resources and increased and sustained provincial support for the project. In addition it is imperative that outcome and impact evaluations be done.