Improving the quality of care for people who had a stroke in a low-/middle-income country

A qualitative analysis of health-care professionals’ perspectives

Leonard Baatiema, Ama de-Graft Aikins, Fred S. Sarfo, Seye Abimbola, John K. Ganle, Shawn Somerset

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background and Objective: Efforts to improve the adoption of evidence-based interventions for optimal patient outcomes in low-/middle-income countries (LMICs) are persistently hampered by a plethora of barriers. Yet, little is known about strategies to address such barriers to improve quality stroke care. This study seeks to explore health professionals’ views on strategies to improve quality stroke care for people who had a stroke in a LMIC. Methods: A qualitative interview study design was adopted. A semi-structured interview guide was used to conduct in-depth interviews among forty stroke care providers in major referral centres in Ghana. Participants were from nursing, medical, specialist and allied health professional groups. A purposive sample was recruited to share their views on practical strategies to improve quality stroke care in clinical settings. A thematic analysis approach was utilized to inductively analyse the data. Results: A number of overarching themes of strategies to improve quality stroke care were identified: computerization and digitization of medical practice, allocation of adequate resources, increase the human resource capacity to deliver stroke care, development of clinical guideline/treatment protocols, institutionalization of multidisciplinary care and professional development opportunities. These strategies were however differentially prioritized among different categories of stroke care providers. Conclusion: Closing the gap between existing knowledge on how to improve quality of stroke care in LMICs has the potential to be successful if unique and context-specific measures from the views of stroke care providers are considered in developing quality improvement strategies and health systems and policy reforms. However, for optimal outcomes, further research into the effectiveness and feasibility of the proposed strategies by stroke care providers is needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalHealth Expectations
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 1 Jan 2020


Cite this