With 35% of its patients coming from abroad in 2019, the American Hospital of Paris treats more international patients than any other healthcare facility in France. It is the only hospital outside of the United States to have met the rigid criteria required to earn Joint Commission certification (1,800 items verified). So, it comes as no surprise that it is also the first to obtain the French Hospital Quality label.
The label is the brainchild of a working group dedicated specifically to international patients, which was set up in 2018 within the French Healthcare association and is led by Professor Robert Sigal, General Director of the American Hospital. It has around 30 members (including public hospitals, private clinics, private not-for-profit organizations, cancer centers, and hospital concierge services), all of which are committed to promoting French medical excellence and establishing France as a leading medical tourism destination.
French Healthcare has commissioned AFNOR Certification to audit hospitals applying for the label, which is based on 10 criteria broken down into 57 items. Only hospitals rated A to C by the French National Authority for Health (HAS – Haute Autorité de Santé) may apply. They must also have been treating international patients for at least a year.
“France’s healthcare expertise is beyond question. What is missing, is a way of showcasing that expertise. Hence this label, which is based on modern, incontestable criteria guaranteed by AFNOR”, says Professor Robert Sigal, General Director of the American Hospital.
The entire patient pathway is assessed, from the examination of medical care applications to the management of administrative and financial matters, the quality of hospital stays and the ability of staff to speak a foreign language (especially English) and to translate important medical documents – right through to patient discharge procedures. The hospital must have an international team that is able to guide and support patients and their families, at least in English.
Saint Joseph’s hospital in Paris is also one of the first to have been awarded the French Hospital Quality label, and Foch Hospital in Suresnes is going through the certification process.