Message from the Chief Medical Officer
White Paper on American Hospital Management Healthcare: The AHMC difference
Gregory R. Ciottone, MD, FACEP
Chief Medical Officer
American Hospital Management
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Harvard Medical School
Having served for nearly 20 years as Chief of International Medicine Divisions in two major U.S. Medical Schools, I feel confident in my assessment of global trends in healthcare and where we are now, at the beginning of the second decade of the 21st century. Much of the world today enjoys a robust healthcare system where access is adequate and quality is high. In this segment of the globe, the “first world”, for lack of a better term, if one were to poll the populace as to the most pressing current healthcare issues the results would be: The cost of Healthcare (1), the cost of pioneering new technologies (2), the rationalization of Healthcare costs given the global recession (3), and in some instances, particularly in socialized systems, access to Healthcare (4,5).
These are the Healthcare problems facing the modernized countries of the world. For the rest of the world it is a much different set of problems. It is in these areas where the gap in quality of Healthcare can range wildly, and the impact on the populations can be dramatic. While cost is a factor in the provision of healthcare anywhere in the world, there are significant problems that take precedent in the developing world: Difficulty in obtaining medications (6,7), inadequate primary or continuing medical education (8,9), lack of advanced technology (10), and decaying healthcare infrastructure (11). In order to begin to make uniform the level of healthcare globally, these issues must be systematically addressed.
Too often it is assumed that because a healthcare system exists in a developing country it is destined to provide sub-optimal Medicine. Due to that underlying belief, when providing medical care in these institutions there can develop a level of complacency among both staff and patients, allowing an otherwise unacceptable level of care to go on unchecked. How can a hospital possibly curb infection rates when the streets are not clean and the water not safe to drink? This complacency can then continue and grow, resulting in a general apathy and complete loss of the driving forces for quality in what sets Healthcare apart from any other profession: The care of the sick and dying.
What then are the factors that lead to this complacency and belief that the quality of healthcare is unavoidably lower in developing countries? In many instances this can occur when the administrative bodies overseeing healthcare institutions have either not the experience, or not the motivation to ensure that the highest quality healthcare is provided in their facilities. If post-surgical mortality rate from infection has always been in double digits, or the morbidity and mortality of nosocomial infection has been at a high level for as long as staff can remember, what then is the motivation to change? If a hospital has not taken the step to create a Healthcare Quality office, and the further step of creating goals and standards for the institution, then where is the motivation to do better? The status quo is a much easier thing to achieve. Change must be tied to a desire to do better, pride in one’s professional growth, and a belief in the institution and its leaders. In addition, the leadership of the healthcare organization must be motivated to invest adequate capital into the technology and the educational needs of the institution. Without such investment, it is not possible to raise the quality of healthcare provided.
The AHMC Difference
AHMC healthcare is a team effort, based on partnerships between the management company, the hospital, and the community they both serve. This begins with a commitment to high quality, cutting-edge hospital design, construction, and medical technology. Incorporating U.S industry standards, AHMC hospitals are some of the most advanced in the world. AHMC matches that quality to a dedicated, compassionate, and highly capable medical staff, all of whom are at or above international educational standards. These doctors and nurses are kept up to date through a continuing medical education plan, and the healthcare provided is closely monitored through a robust, hospital-based quality assurance program. Further, local hospital medical staff members are given the opportunity to learn new, advanced systems and clinical guidelines through professional exchange programs with leading medical centers in the United States, including the Harvard teaching hospitals in Boston.
It is the commitment to high quality and advanced technology that makes the American Hospital Management Company one of the leaders of global healthcare. AHMC hospitals have a reputation for their sophisticated yet compassionate care, and stand as a beacon for the entire community and their right to good Medicine, regardless of where on the globe they live.
AHMC: Highest quality healthcare anywhere in the world.
- Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Office of the Actuary, National Health Statistics Group, National Health Care Expenditures Data, January 2010.
- Congress of the United States, Congressional Budget Office. Technological Change and the Growth of Health Care Spending, January 2008
- Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured, The Crunch Continues: Medicaid Spending, Coverage and Policy in the Midst of a Recession, 2009
- Kontopantelis E, Roland M, Reeves D. Patient Experiences of Access to Primary Care: Identification of Predictors in a National Patient Survey, BMC Fam Pract. 2010 Aug 28: 11:61
- Bowling A, McKee M, Unequal Access to healthcare in England, BMJ, 2010 Aug 11;341:c3726
- Yusuff KB, Tayo F.,Drug Supply Strategies, Constraints and Prospects in Nigeria, Afr J Med Med Sci. 2004 Dec;33(4):389-94
- Nicol D, Balancing Access to Pharmaceuticals with Patient Rights, Monash Bioeth Rev. 2003 Apr(22)2: 50-62.
- YoungKong S, Kapiriri L, Baltussen R, Setting Priorities for Health Interventions in Developing Countries: A Review of Empirical Studies, Trop Med Int Health,. 2009 Aug;14(8):930-9
- Santesso N, Tugwell P, Knowledge Translation in Developing Countries, J Contin Educ Health Prof. 2006 Winter;26(1):87-96
- Acharya T. Science and Technology for Wealth and Health in Developing Countries, Glob Public Health. 2007;2(1):53-63
- Parfitt B, Health Reform: The Human Resources Challenges for Central Asian Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) Countries, Collegian. 2009;16(1):35-40