How do clients really feel about COGH SPCA service delivery?

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Introduction

The effect of lockdown, short time and rising unemployment has put increased strain on the animal welfare system. We had an increase in cases from people who are no longer able to access care in the private sector who are now turning to the welfare sector for their veterinary needs.  We recorded a more than 22% increase in the number of cases at the height of the pandemic and the numbers continue to increase daily. As a high-volume animal facility, we see on average 45 000 cases per year of which more than 60% present as moderate to severe cases.

Strengthening Systems

Business research and communication play a key role in the enhancement of managerial practice and decision making. At a high-level overview, the system strengthening initiative will further improve the management and resource allocation in six key building blocks namely, Service Delivery, Information Systems, Pharmacy, Leadership and Governance, Human Resources and Finance.

Results – More than 75% surveyed will recommend SPCA to Family and Friends

 

Methodology

A non-probability convenience sampling technique was used, which relied on data collection from individuals who were readily available to participate during the month of February at a clinic visit. The dataset was populated with responses through a digital platform and thereafter exported into Microsoft Excel for basic analysis.   The digital survey followed a mixed-method approach to obtain both qualitative and quantitative responses.

 

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A total of 200 clients participated in the survey of which 29 abandoned or submitted an incomplete questionnaire. Of the 170 respondents, 65% were dogs owners and 35% cat owners.  66% of respondents reported they attended a general consultation, 15% theatre procedure and 9% cited their visit as an emergency case.  35% was admitted to the hospital and 66% were treated as day patients.  In terms of total waiting time from arrival to exit 9% waited less than 15 minutes, 21% waited 1 hour, 31% waited 1.5 hours, 29% waited 2 hours or longer. More than 75% of those surveyed are likely to recommend the COGH SPCA to family and friends.  74% rated their experience at the COGH SPCA as extremely satisfying.

83 of the 170 responses (48.82%) submitted also included qualitative feedback.  For ease of analysis, we categorised the qualitative feedback into three main themes emerging from the responses, namely Information  Service Delivery  Systems related.  From the 83 qualitative responses, 69 (83.3%) were service delivery related, 11 (13.2%) systems and 3 (3.61%) information related. More than 95% of the submitted responses were positive.

Discussion

The results provide a baseline measure for client satisfaction and will continue to provide key insight into the movement of clients through the COGH SPCA hospital. Moreover, these outcomes will further inform system strengthening initiatives in an evidence-based manner as a form of operational implementation science to improve client experience and waiting time going forward.  

Limitations

The Cape of Good Hope SPCA made use of a non-probability sample; therefore, the results stated here cannot be generalised beyond the sample and are not nationally representative.

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