Many valuable lessons have been learnt throughout this initiative and the key elements for successful implementation were identified.
Of primary importance was the patient-centred care approach to providing effective treatment for Thalassemia sufferers. Empowering patients and their families through genuine participation led to the creation of effective role models to improve all aspects of Thalassemia care. Providing such ‘inner drive’ for the patients meant that the initiative was truly ‘of the patients, for the patients, and by the patients’. Communication between health care providers and patients became much more effective through mutual understanding, compassion and recognition of the difficulties faced by both parties. The sustainable and transferable nature of these patient role models also represented a valuable lesson in providing equitable treatment for thalassemia sufferers.
The initiative also provided many key lessons for health care providers. Humanized health care, through a multi-disciplinary team-based approach, was a vital element in the success of the initiative. The hospital was able to streamline its system, maximize the use of existing resources, and meet social needs in an accountable, responsible, transparent manner. This one-step service approach then became a sustainable and transferable methodology for providing greater prevention, treatment and rehabilitation for Thalassemia patients.
While there is still a long way to go in developing Thailand ’s core systems to prevent and control the spread of Thalassemia, the initiative has undoubtedly enabled health care policy makers to identify clearly the most sustainable and transferable elements in providing effective, equitable, high-quality care for Thalassemia patients and their families.
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