World Patient Day: Not Just Caring for The Unwell, but the health of the Whole Family

In recent years, the healthcare industry has been emphasizing patient-centered care. One way they’re doing this is by making sure that caregivers are aware of how their actions could be affecting their patients’ wellness after they leave their facilities. This has given rise to World patient day – September 17.

World Patient Day is a day to increase public awareness and engagement, enhance global understanding, and work towards global solidarity and action by all nations to enhance patient safety and reduce patient harm. A lot happens within the health sector to increase the health systems performance, however, on this day, we are reminded for whom all those efforts are made – the patients. Patient-centred care is a global best practice in healthcare delivery without which all the efforts to strengthen the health system would fail.

Issues such as quality of service and need for an empathetic and inclusive environment are hardly discussed but should be discussed on days such as this. Thankfully, the Nigeria’s Patients Bill of Rights provides a legal framework for a right-based patients handling but suspectedly, nothing much has been done with regard to increasing awareness about these rights among citizens and health workers thereby ampling projected results. Many Nigerians still complain about unsatisfactory quality of care despite harrowing out-of-pocket spending on healthcare.

It is also a day to remember that not only are we responsible for caring for the sick, but also for their families. It can be easy to forget this when we’re focused on the task at hand, but it is important to remember that the whole family is affected when someone falls ill. the spouse, children, parents, and other loved ones also need care.

When everyone comes together to support the sick, it can make a world of difference. It takes a village to care for a sick person, and that’s something we should all keep in mind today.

The term ‘whole family approach’ is commonly used in healthcare, but what does it actually mean? Essentially, it is an approach that recognizes that the health of the individual is connected to the health of the entire family. A Whole Family Approach ensures all family members are able to access health services during a visit to a health clinic, from routine immunization services for children to monitoring non-communicable diseases, such as diabetes for adults.

‘One Stop Shop’ for families to access a range of PHC services, including building awareness of available services for families, such as the delivery of COVID-19 vaccination alongside routine immunization services for children.

in order for Whole Family Approach to work, innovative approaches to efficient PHC service delivery to work, trust in health facilities would be imperative, requiring PHC centres to be functional enabling families to have confidence to rely on PHC centres and plans visits to enable all family members to receive treatment.

When it comes to health care, it is important to think about the whole family. That is why World Patient Day is such an important day to remember.

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