By Majd Othman

KUWAIT: Royale Hayat Hospital, in collaboration with the Healthcare Interest Group of the Saudi Quality Council, held on Saturday Kuwait’s first patient experience conference as a part of the hospital’s endeavor to provide “Care Beyond Boundaries”, which is the title the conference highlighted.

The conference was chaired by Dr Abubakr Elmardi, Chief Strategy Officer and Head of Obstetrics & Gynecology at Royale Hayat Hospital, with the participation of Dr Nashat Nafouri, Chair and Executive Officer of Healthcare Interest Group and Member of the Saudi Quality Council board, Dr Ashraf AlSahafi, Deputy Executive Director, Clinical Service, Consultant Pediatric Hepatologist, King Abdulaziz Medical City, Jeddah, Samer T Abu Ghazaleh, Chief Experience Officer, Chairman Healthcare Council, Jeddah, Jehan Al-Fannah, Manager Health Services Evaluation Unit, Department of Quality and Patient Safety, Royal Hospital, Muscat, and Sara Al-Rumikhani, Director Patient Experience and Patient Experience Advocate, Saudi Arabia.

The conference helped to disseminate recent trends and exchange information by experts on the importance of patient experience, as it was attended by more than 100 delegates representing healthcare service providers and leaders from private and ministry hospitals, including patients.

The speakers emphasized the relevance of engaging patients in care delivery, especially in this rapidly changing situation, and highlighted the importance of employing new tools and techniques to measure patient experience, in addition to discussing the science and technology that is moving faster than ever before, how the tools used in improving healthcare delivery are evolving rapidly, and stressing on the expectations of patients that are also on the rise. The conference provided an excellent opportunity to share future strategies in addressing this relevant issue that improves the outcome of care delivery.

Meanwhile, the highlight of this conference was the participation of a patient who narrated her own experience in healthcare domain. In addition, one of the outcomes of this conference was to strengthen collaboration amongst various hospitals and healthcare professionals in Kuwait, as there were many stimulating ideas that emerged that expressed interest in patient engagement and collaboration amongst healthcare professionals.

Dr Elmardi told Kuwait Times that the hospital’s message from conducting this conference is not only providing medical care to patients, but also emphasizes the importance of giving the right care to the patients through improving their service journey. Regarding the participation of Saudi Arabia and Oman in the conference, he said: “They are highly advanced in the area of healthcare, quality and patient experience, and inviting them will improve our experience so we can join these GCC countries’ development at this field by offering the right care.”

Patient Fatima Al-Abduljalil told Kuwait Times about her experience at Royale Hayat Hospital. “I have been a patient at Royale Hayat for the last 13 years, where I had my first delivery in 2019, and had a few operations at the hospital. Royale Hayat offered me the best services compared to other private national and international hospitals. They care about patient satisfaction as they make sure to get feedback about their services,” she said.

Dr Nafouri said this conference speaks about the experience of patients, which is fundamental nowadays in healthcare. “We are delighted that this hospital set the ground for such a conference in Kuwait and highlighted the importance of the topic of patient experience,” she said. Dennis Joseph, Quality Director, and Vanitha Rajakumar, Chief Nursing Officer at Royale Hayat Hospital, presented papers during the conference. The organizers had to close registration one week prior to the conference due to an overwhelming response.