SMS Feedback Platform launched for patients in Nigeria
Federal Government has said henceforth, patients attending Federal Government Hospitals can now report on the quality of services through SMS. With the support of MTN and Glo GSM Networks, who are providing the platform with which the service are being provided, the Federal Ministry of Health said it is poised to check the activities of quacks through the Patients' Feedback Platform with the generic shortcode 30500.
Minister of Health, Prof. Babatunde Osotimehin, while explaining the reason behind the concept said the Government has realised that health should not be responsibility of the patient alone, "As providers, we too have a responsibility".
He said: "The era whereby health workers think that they are doing patients a favour has gone. This platform is an engagement with the public for better service delivery. he seized the opportunity to announce that henceforth, Health workers in all Federal Government institutions will wear nametags to make the project effective, as he opined that it will enable the patient to identify and name exactly who attended to him or her
"This will allow the patient to know who to complain about. The essence of this is that transparency and accountability is brought into service delivery.. The public must be made to be aware with the power to air their fears and complaints with the realization that correction would be made."
He disclosed that 53 Federal Government health institutions were linked to the platform, stressing that "patients are expected to text their complaints to the number 30500. The message would be forwarded to the Ministry from where it will be disaggregated with specific code to the hospital concerned."
While performing the launch of this innovative electronic gateway, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Dimeji Bankole, tasked Global System for Mobile communication (GSM) service providers on quality of service. This is as hospital workers in Federal Government health institutions across the country have been directed to carry name tags henceforth.
The platform is a partnership between the FG and Global System for Mobile communication (GSM) service providers MTN whereby patients are given the opportunity of relaying their complaints through SMS on the quality of health service to the Ministry for necessary action.
Bankole while launching the feedback platform in Abuja, said laudable as the project is, network failure is capable of negating the effects it was meant to generate.