Original Research

Translating a National Laboratory Strategic Plan into action through SLMTA in a district hospital laboratory in Botswana

Keoratile Ntshambiwa, Winnie Ntabe-Jagwer, Chandapiwa Kefilwe, Fredrick Samuel, Sikhulile Moyo
African Journal of Laboratory Medicine | Vol 3, No 2 | a209 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ajlm.v3i2.209 | © 2014 Keoratile Ntshambiwa, Winnie Ntabe-Jagwer, Chandapiwa Kefilwe, Fredrick Samuel, Sikhulile Moyo | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 27 June 2014 | Published: 03 November 2014

About the author(s)

Keoratile Ntshambiwa, Sekgoma Memorial Hospital, Ministry of Health, Botswana
Winnie Ntabe-Jagwer, Sekgoma Memorial Hospital, Ministry of Health, Botswana
Chandapiwa Kefilwe, Sekgoma Memorial Hospital, Ministry of Health, Botswana
Fredrick Samuel, Sekgoma Memorial Hospital, Ministry of Health, Botswana
Sikhulile Moyo, Botswana-Harvard AIDS Institute Partnership and Botswana-Harvard HIV Reference Laboratory, Princess Marina Hospital, Botswana


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Abstract

Background: The Ministry of Health (MOH) of Botswana adopted Strengthening Laboratory Management Toward Accreditation (SLMTA), a structured quality improvement programme, as a key tool for the implementation of quality management systems in its public health laboratories. Coupled with focused mentorship, this programme aimed to help MOH achieve the goals of the National Laboratory Strategic Plan to provide quality and timely clinical diagnosis.

Objectives: This article describes the impact of implementing SLMTA in Sekgoma Memorial Hospital Laboratory (SMHL) in Serowe, Botswana.

Methods: SLMTA implementation in SMHL included trainings, improvement projects, site visits and focused mentorship. To measure progress, audits using the Stepwise Laboratory Quality Improvement Process Towards Accreditation (SLIPTA) checklist were conducted at baseline and exit of the programme, with scores corresponding to a zero- to five-star scale.Turnaround times and customer satisfaction were tracked.

Results: The laboratory scored 53% (zero stars) at the baseline audit and 80% (three stars) at exit. Nearly three years later, the laboratory scored 85% (four stars) in an official audit conducted by the African Society for Laboratory Medicine. Turnaround times became shorter after SLMTA implementation, with reductions ranging 19% to 52%; overall patient satisfaction increased from 56% to 73%; and clinician satisfaction increased from 41% to 72%. Improvements in inventory management led to decreases in discarded reagents, reducinglosses from US $18 000 in 2011 to $40 in 2013.

Conclusion: The SLMTA programme contributed to enhanced performance of the laboratory,which in turn yielded potential positive impacts for patient care at the hospital.


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Crossref Citations

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