Benefits derived from the Council for Health Services Accreditation
South Africa (COHSASA) accreditation of the Universitas
Academic Hospital (UAH) in Bloemfontein are illustrated.
Accreditation assessments were performed between 2001 and 2007,
and full compliance with the COHSASA standards for Academic
Hospitals was achieved. An initiative to develop thoracic surgery
in central South Africa (SA) was launched by the Department of
Cardiothoracic Surgery at UAH. The synergistic effects of quality
improvements in healthcare provision owing to the accreditation
process, and the project to increase service provision in thoracic
surgery in central SA, have led to a qualitative and quantitative
increase in thoracic surgical service provision. The importance
of academic hospital accreditation in strengthening postgraduate
training programmes is shown, and the accreditation process is
recommended for all South African academic teaching hospitals to
support, improve and sustain our training platforms.