A hospital that is relentlessly serving the Indian healthcare industry since over 45 years with its holistic and compassionate care services is Bangalore Baptist Hospital (BBH). This 340-bedded multispecialty mission hospital is leading the way of ensuring quality healthcare in the country. To know more about its remarkable services, we, at Insightscare, bring an exclusive interview with its CEO, Dr. Naveen Thomas. Dr Naveen Thomas is a specialist in General and Paediatric Surgery and has an M Phil in ‘hospital health systems management’. Presently, he heads the team which has been responsible for the hospital’s growth.
1. We would like to know about your interesting journey, from an outpatient clinic to a Multispecialty hospital to the success height BBH is at today.
The biggest asset we have today is that of an implicit trust of the community around us. Trust is not earned overnight; it is a result of credible honest work over the years. The support and encouragement of the community is invaluable. This comes about when the community feels that there is a ‘value add’ because of the hospital. Integrity and professional excellence have been hall marks of the institution. Being relevant to the community will also mean being up to date: constant innovation, keeping up with the changing realities and demands, staying abreast of technological advancements are aspects of this.
2. At BBH, what are the novel services and solutions that benefit the patients? What are these benefits that they reap?
- Approximately 25% of our beds (72 of them right now) are related to intensive care. There is currently a big need for a provision of well-equipped high quality intensive care in hospitals. It was this realization that drove us to augment and increase the number of these beds.
- Comprehensive Cancer Care: Number of malignancies is going up by the day. There is a felt need for a complete cancer care – all under one roof. Radiation Therapy, Medical Oncology, Surgical Oncology in all specialties are the features of HCO. A state-of-the-art Bone Marrow Transplant Unit is being established and should be ready very shortly.
- Mother and Child Care: Bangalore Baptist Hospital has the highest number of deliveries per month for any private hospitals in Bangalore. In fact, it is much more than that of private medical colleges in the city. High risk obstetrics, advanced gynae surgeries, neonatal and paediatric ICU, paed neurology, paed cardiology, paed pscyciatry, paed genetics, and paed surgical services are being offered.
- Reproductive Medicine Unit: World-class IVF facilities with world class results
- Comprehensive Cardiac Sciences: Interventional Cardiology and Cardiothoracic surgical services are being offered. Complex interventions are being done on a regular basis.
- Geriatric Services: BBH recently received the “Older Patient Friendly Hospital” award. Our geriatrician Dr Benjamin received the Vyoshreshtha award from the Vice President of India in 2018.
- Nephrology Services: Almost 1000 haemodialyses are done every month. Senior nephrologists and urologists are part of the team.
- Spine surgeries, joint replacements, bariatric surgery services, pulmonology, andrology, head and neck oncology, rheumatology, endocrinology are some of the services offered.
- Large Community Outreach Services: One million people are served in Bangalore Rural District and another million are covered in the 12 slums of Bangalore. Palliative care services reach out to people in need of terminal care, a great felt need. District disability rehabilitation center in Bangalore Rural District is run by BBH in collaboration with the government.
- Post graduate residency courses in 11 specialties (DNB courses) are offered. BBH was conferred the ‘Best Teaching Hospital’ national award a few years ago.
- We hope to continue to partner with other collaborations. One such example is our collaboration with Baylor University in the U.S. We were recipients of the USAID grant in the year 2015-16 which resulted in the building of a state-of-the-art ‘Simulation Education Research Centre’. High fidelity mannequins and facilities have helped in the education of nursing students, nurses, post graduate medical students, and other health care professionals.
3. BBH is known for its 46 years of Quality, Service, and Care. How have you managed to remain on the top of the ladder for all these years?
Association with Christian Medical College, Vellore, has been a very positive factor in the growth of BBH. Commitment to the quality journey very early on has helped chart its course towards greater heights. BBH was the first mission hospital in the country to be NABH and NABL accredited. When Baptist Hospital received this award, it became part of the first one hundred hospitals thus recognized in the country. Health Communication Workshops were conducted all over the country in various hospitals, medical colleges, and even defense establishments. Institute of Healthcare Excellence has been initiated (IHE-BBH) in Baptist Hospital to provide a forum for exchange of ideas and to share knowledge.
4. Being focused on compassion and charity, how is BBH helping the underprivileged Section of the society? Also, tell us about your Community Health Division (CHD).
Being relevant to the disadvantaged is central to the existence of Bangalore Baptist Hospital. 18% of the total budget is reserved for the care of the poor and the disadvantaged. This is true within the hospital and also in the large community health network outside the confines of the hospital. The higher paying patients do ask for more frills and better ambience, but they pay more and thus, are able to help subsidize the poor. At BBH, the concessions are reserved only for the ‘general subsidized’ category. On an average, the patient mix is that of 35% private patients to 65% general patients.
5. BBH claims to be the first mission hospital in India to be accredited with NABH and NABL. What led to this?
There has always been a realization that there has to be a palpable commitment to quality. When BBH received NABH and NABL accreditation, it was among the first 100 of the country. BBH was also the first mission hospital in the country to be thus accredited. Nursing Excellence award was given in 2018.
I am reminded about the story of the mountain climber who was lost in a blizzard. After days of frantic search and rescue efforts, as his team members erected a stone in his memory, they inscribed the following sentence: “When last seen, he was still climbing”. That, in a nutshell, crystallises the BBH story. We hope we will never stop climbing. Quality is a journey; not a destination.
6. At the position it has achieved, BBH must have been adorned with various honors. What are the major awards and felicitations that you have received so far?
- 2019 : AHPI Award for the Category “Best Hospital to Work for”
- 2018: Vayoshreshtha Samman (National Award for Senior Citizens)
- 2018: Nursing Excellence accreditation by NABH
- 2017: Centre for Quality Promotion by CAHO
- 2017: IMC RBNQ Certificate of Merit for “Performance Excellence”
- 2017: AHPI Healthcare Excellence Award 2017 for “Excellence in Community Engagement”
- 2015: Most Promising Diagnostic Facility in Karnataka by Global Business & Leadership.
- 2015: Best Laboratory Award in the CAHOCON-2015
- 2014: Healthcare Excellence Award
- Most Promising Multi Specialty Hospital in Bangalore by Worldwide Achievers.
- 2014: IMA Medachievers.com Award for “Excellence in contributing towards Medical Education” by Indian Medical Association (IMA).
- 2014: QCI-DL Shah National Quality Award for “Quality Initiative for the Nation”
- 2013: QCI-DL Shah National Quality Award
- 2012: Teaching Excellence Award from the National Board of Examinations at the national level
- 2012: FICCI Healthcare Excellence Award for making ingenious contributions to operational excellence
- 2011: NABH and NABL Accreditation
7. It is highly important to stay abreast with all the new trends and technological advancements in this industry. How have you managed to do this?
We invest in people. ‘Personnel’ have been the greatest asset. Commitment to teaching has resulted in further improvement in quality. To answer about adopting the technological advancements, best of the equipment are available in the hospital. Just last year, a 128 slice high end CT scan machine and a digital mammography machine with facility for stereotactic biopsies were added on. Critical care, anaesthesiology, operation theatres, etc. have seen much investment and importance. Not only what is seen, but what is at the ‘back end’ – that is unseen is given much importance.
8. What are your future plans for the hospital? Where do you see BBH in the years to come?
To be a beacon of healthcare innovation and quality, continue to impact many more lives, communities, villages, and slums, continue to grow to a 500-bed credible tertiary care center of ‘Quality with Compassion’, to influence and partner in policy development and the quality journey of fellow travelers and healthcare organizations. A new mother and child block, addition of brachytherapy center, state-of-the-art bone marrow transplant unit are all taking shape. One of our aims is to grow as an educational institution – imparting quality medical education at all levels.