As I come to the end of my summer practicum, addressing patient satisfaction in maternal health services in Ghana, I ponder on how underestimated the power in numbers are. Just like the popular African proverb says, “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to far, go together,” I reflect on my overall experience in comparison to the adage which brought a whole lot of understanding and meaning to my life and how I approach my career. It further reflects the importance of multidisciplinary approach to solving problems. The recent pandemic robbed us of the physical support system but has also made us develop the skills in virtual communication.
At the start of my practicum, I wondered how I could make an impact without being physically present in the practicum setting. But as I conclude, I realize I learnt a lot and still had my usual support though virtual but very present. Help was always an email, phone call or Zoom meeting away and surprisingly equally as effective.
Patient satisfaction is considered a proxy for quality of health care. This practicum enlightened me on many aspects of care that is neglected which when considered greatly impacts service delivery. Something as basic as provider introduction and knowledge of service rendered prior gave patients a sense of trust and increased assess to health care and compliance.
In all, I learned that to make interventions that are sustainable, the voice of the patient must be considered. I am glad that I got to be a part of a team that worked virtually to impact a change in my home country and grateful for the support from my mini “African Union.”