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AIIMS 1st central institute to adopt 3rd-party audit

At a time when hospital-acquired infections and antimicrobial resistance are posing grave challenges to patient safety, the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi, today turned a new leaf by becoming the first autonomous central government institute in the country to accept a third-party audit of safety and quality standards and procedures.

The institute will seek the National Accreditation Board for Hospitals (NABH) accreditation starting today by subjecting each of its major tertiary healthcare blocks to audit by top independent experts.

To start with, the Burns and Plastic Surgery block of the institute will aim at NABH accreditation by March 2023, followed by the Trauma Centre, the Maternal and Child Health block, the Geriatric and then the Surgical block.

The step seeks to motivate other top government institutes, including the PGI, Chandigarh, JIPMER, Puducherry, and 22 other AIIMS — all established under Acts of Parliament — to follow suit.

The move is significant considering an abysmal rate of hospital accreditation in India. NABH chief executive officer Atul Mohan Kochhar today told The Tribune that of an estimated one lakh hospitals in India, only 2,500 were accredited. That is a national accreditation rate of just 2.5%.

“Around 8,500 have taken entry-level certification, which is a lower level of quality certification,” he said, adding that government hospitals had lagged along the road to third-party quality audits for long.

Asked what took AIIMS, New Delhi, to subject itself to an external review, Kochhar said, “Leadership makes all the difference.”

New AIIMS Director M Srinivas has decided that the institute will raise the bar so far as patient safety, hospital infection control and patient satisfaction are concerned, he said.

The idea is to encourage patient safety movement and inspire hospitals to seek voluntary accreditation.

Only 2.5% hospitals accredited in country

  • The move is significant considering an abysmal rate of hospital accreditation in India
  • Of an estimated one lakh hospitals in the country, only 2,500 (2.5%) are accredited

Tribune India

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