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Adoption of the WHO Assessment Tool on the Quality of Hospital Care for Mothers and Newborns in Albania

Ehadu Mersini, Silvana Novi, Eduard Tushe, Maksim Gjoni, Genc Burazeri

Abstract
Aim: The aim of the adoption process of the “Quality of hospital care for mothers and newborns babies, assessment tool” (WHO, 2009) was to provide the Albanian health professionals of maternity hospitals with a tool that may help them assess the quality of perinatal care and identify key areas of pregnancy, childbirth and newborn care that need to be improved. Methods: Four maternity hospitals (one university hospital and three regional hospitals) were selected for the assessment using this standard tool covering over 600 items grouped into 13 areas ranging from supportive services to case management. Sources of information consisted of site visits, hospital statistics, medical records, observation of cases and interviews with staff and patients. A score was assigned to each item (range 0-3) and area of care. The assessments were carried out in two rounds: in 2009 and in 2011. These assessments provided semi-quantitative data on the quality of hospital care for mothers and newborns. Results: Data collected on the first round established a baseline assessment, whereas the second round monitored the subsequent changes. The findings of the second round revealed improvements encountered in all maternities, notwithstanding differences in the levels of improvement between maternities, not necessarily linked with extra financial inputs. Conclusions: The Albanian experience indicates a successful process of the adoption of the WHO tool on the quality of hospital care for mothers and newborn babies. The adopted tool can be used country-wide as a component of a quality improvement strategy in perinatal health care in Albania.
[Acta Inform Med 2012; 20(4.000): 226-234]

Keywords: Albania, maternity hospital, quality, WHO assessment tool

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