Health is essential in every population, and the need to provide quality medical care has led Mexico to implement the hospital certification process to guarantee the quality of care, based on the principles of universality, solidarity, and pluralism. The fundamental purposes are to achieve equity, efficiency, and quality.
Retired Colonel Doctor Sandra Edith Mayén Ramírez
I am a military surgeon, graduated from the Military Medical School in 1997. I completed my internship and specialty in Comprehensive and Emergency Medicine at the Military Central Hospital from 1997 to 1999. In 2002, I entered the Military Graduate School of Health to specialize and do residency in Otolaryngology.
Hospital certification, a new challenge, and no options to study it.
Since 2006, I have provided my services in different military hospitals, but it was in 2014 when I reluctantly entered the world of hospital certification. I was assigned to the Quality Department of the Military Central Hospital. Previously, during my medical career, and while working as clinical staff, I never received formal education on hospital certification. There was no online hospital certification course available that I could use to fulfill the mission assigned to me: to participate in the implementation of the Council of General Health’s quality management model in my facility.
Teamwork takes you far
Fortunately, with the support of the management team, my immediate bosses, and veteran leaders assigned to different sections, we managed to successfully complete the hospital certification in 2016, obtaining a score of 10. This achievement provided the Military Central Hospital (a third-level health establishment with more than 600 census beds) with the opportunity to maintain its certification for 5 years and made it a reference center regarding hospital certification in Mexico.
Training within the scope of hospital certification.
Since 2014, when I was assigned to the Quality Department, I was given tutorial training by my superiors regarding what hospital certification entailed, and I also received their support to attend various courses organized by both the General Health Council and different institutions, which aimed to generate awareness of the importance of implementing and maintaining the Patient Safety Model of the National System for Certification of Medical Care Establishments.
I must say that, to date, I am a person convinced of the advantages offered by this quality management model in healthcare, since well-implemented, it reduces adverse events in medical care and protects both patients and healthcare teams.
The role of experience in the hospital certification process
On the other hand, working in the Quality Department of the Central Military Hospital provided me with the opportunity to develop organizational skills and knowledge within the Federal Public Administration, as well as to be an agent of mediation and conciliation for conflicts caused by medical care, in addition to working jointly with those who attended to legal requirements.
From 2020 to September 2022, when I retired from active service, I served as Head of the Quality Department, being in charge of organizing the registration for the next hospital certification, as well as the adjustments to the hospital’s organizational structure, the elaboration of the organization and operation manuals, coordination through the Quality and Patient Safety Committee (COCASEP) of the hospital committees and Ombudsperson. All of this allowed me to further develop my knowledge of the hospital certification process and the hospital regulations that must be applied.