From the Editor

Innovations in the clinical care of mothers and children in South Africa: The contribution of district clinical specialist teams

U Feucht, C Marshall, S Kauchali, P Barron, L Slavin, S Bhardwaj, Y Pillay

Abstract


The contribution of the District Clinical Specialist Teams (DCSTs) to improving maternal and child health outcomes in South Africa, through strengthening the four pillars of clinical governance, is reflected in innovative work presented at a ‘Promising Practices’ symposium and at various conferences. Of the 24 identified DCST innovations, 21% reflected the clinical effectiveness pillar, 17% clinical risk management, 41% staff development, and 21% user-related considerations. In order to ensure scale-up, the submitted best practices/ innovations were reviewed using the World Health Organization quality standards and ExpandNet parameters for likely scalability. Here we describe one case study from each pillar, illustrating the contribution of the innovations to improved patient outcomes. The development and scale-up of innovations needs to be institutionalised and must include effective support and action from the relevant health managers.


Authors' affiliations

U Feucht, Department of Paediatrics, School of Medicine, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Pretoria, South Africa; Tshwane District Health Services, Gauteng Department of Health, South Africa; Research Centre for Maternal, Fetal, Newborn and Child Health Care Strategies, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Pretoria, South Africa

C Marshall, Research Centre for Maternal, Fetal, Newborn and Child Health Care Strategies, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Pretoria, South Africa; National Department of Health, Pretoria, South Africa

S Kauchali, National Department of Health, Pretoria, South Africa; Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Nelson Mandela School of Medicine, College of Health Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban, South Africa

P Barron, School of Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa

L Slavin, United Nationa Children’s Fund (UNICEF), Pretoria, South Africa

S Bhardwaj, United Nationa Children’s Fund (UNICEF), Pretoria, South Africa

Y Pillay, National Department of Health, Pretoria, South Africa

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Cite this article

South African Medical Journal 2018;108(3a):s38-s43. DOI:10.7196/SAMJ.2017.v108i3b.12808

Article History

Date submitted: 2018-03-02
Date published: 2018-03-02

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