A Public-Private Partnership Improves Clinical Performance In A Hospital Network In Lesotho
Author: Nathalie McIntosh, Aria Grabowski, Brian Jack, Elizabeth Limakatso Nkabane-Nkholongo, Taryn Vian
Health care public-private partnerships (PPPs) between a government and the private sector are based on a business model that aims to leverage private-sector expertise to improve clinical performance in hospitals and other health facilities. Although the financial implications of such partnerships have been analyzed, few studies have examined the partnerships’ impact on clinical performance outcomes. Using quantitative measures that reflected capacity, utilization, clinical quality, and patient outcomes, we compared a government-managed hospital network in Lesotho, Africa, and the new PPP-managed hospital network that replaced it. In addition, we used key informant interviews to help explain differences in performance. We found that the PPP-managed network delivered more and higher-quality services and achieved significant gains in clinical outcomes, compared to the government-managed network. We conclude that health care public-private partnerships may improve hospital performance in developing countries and that changes in management and leadership practices might account for differences in clinical outcomes.