A systematic review of the literature has confirmed the perspectives of patients on healthcare quality issues in the GCC countries. In these countries, the focus on patient-centered care is increasing, and understanding the healthcare outcomes that matter most to patients is becoming increasingly crucial.
The review used online databases to search for relevant peer-reviewed articles published between 2012 and 2023. Twenty-two articles were qualitatively analyzed based on the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis (PRISMA) guidelines. It was found that the majority of the articles (90%) reported on studies conducted in Saudi Arabia.
Identifying and Addressing Healthcare Quality Challenges in GCC Countries
Patients in the GCC countries face common problems in the care delivery process, which contribute to negative perceptions of quality. These problems include diagnostic and medication errors, provider-patient communication problems, missed appointments with physicians, and problems in emergency care access due to geographical distance and transportation barriers. Other issues include long waiting times and physical environments.
Healthcare quality is seen to be an outcome of multiple factors that depend on the location and category of healthcare service providers. For example, disparities in perceptions of quality were observed between patients attending Primary Health Care (PHC) centers in rural and urban areas. Issues such as lack of equitable healthcare delivery and deficiencies in Emergency Medical Services (EMS) effectiveness were disparately recognized as quality concerns by different patient populations.
These findings provide insights into healthcare quality and areas of weakness requiring strategic planning and policy implementation to ensure patient-centered, safe, equitable, timely, and effective healthcare. Healthcare providers and policymakers in GCC countries can use these results to plan, assess, and improve care delivery.
Original Article DOI: 10.3390/healthcare12030315
Original title: Healthcare Quality from the Perspective of Patients in Gulf Cooperation Council Countries: A Systematic Literature Review