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January 3, 2014

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Health survey lists patients’ complaints

Dirty restrooms and the high costs of treatments are among the major complaints of patients seeking treatments at the out-patient departments in local hospitals, a survey released yesterday said.

Lack of food choices and hygiene problems left many hospitalized patients dissatisfied.

The survey, led by Shanghai Medical Ethos Association, interviewed 6,500 patients in the city’s district-level hospitals and neighborhood health centers for their opinions on hospital service quality.

The result showed the large number of patients and limited health resources are the main reasons for the dissatisfaction, as patients’ satisfaction rate is related with the number of staff at a hospital and the number of staff serving each bed.

The reality is that the numbers of doctors shared by 10,000 residents in Shanghai halved in the last 20 years due to an increase in population.

In 1990, for every 10,000 people there were 44 doctors. It dropped to 22 doctors for the same number in 2011 and 23 doctors in 2012.

In addition to treating local residents, doctors are also treating patients who come all the way from other provinces to Shanghai for its high medical capability.

The city’s hospitals offered 211 million out-patient and emergency service in 2012, making it routine for big hospitals to check on over 10,000 patient each day.

Doctors get to spend just few minutes with patients to meet the huge workload. Hospital beds are always in demand.

“The survey is to study patients’ requirements and improve local health service,”  said Fan Guanrong, director of the Shanghai Medical Ethos Association.

“The same survey will be conducted in the following years to offer information for local health authorities and hospitals.”

Experts also said the government should do better planning on health facilities and further the current health reform.

“It is important to guide patients to neighborhood health centers and district-based hospitals for small ailments, while the big hospitals should focus on complicated diseases,” said Zhou Haiwang from Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences.

The survey has found that patients have the highest satisfaction rate on neighborhood health centers among the different levels of hospitals.



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