We had the opportunity to visit the Austral Medical Center today in order to truly get to see how things function at a private Argentinian hospital. After meeting the nurse manager, we split up into groups to tour the hospital and its facilities. The universities mission statement reads as “the pursuit of truth and a culture of life” that their services embodied extremely well. The University and the hospital conduct a great deal of medical research, fulfilling the “pursuit of truth” aspect of their mission statement. We got to see where they conduct some of this research as one of the researchers showed us around and told us about how they conduct research on animals like rats and rabbits. She was involved in the pain department and tested rats using various tactics, such as using a poking method to determine their level of pain. The research department was able to convince the hospital and university to build a home for these animals in order to conduct this research, but also take care of them and help them recover after various testing processes. The hospital and it staff also work hard in order to determine what illness a patient is suffering from and pursue the best and most effective treatment method, also fulfilling the first part of their mission statement. The hospital’s efforts to find and use the best treatment for its patients clearly reflects how important their mission statement is to them and their well-placed priorities. The administration of Austral has also funded a startup called HIVE to conduct financial analysis on possible projects that promote innovation, which would also eventually improve the quality of healthcare at Austral and also contributes to the fulfillment of their mission statement.
One of the things that stood out to me immediately was how friendly their staff were and how courteously they treat each other, clearly reflecting their goal of creating a “culture of life.” They care a great deal about their patients and providing the best possible treatment for them. One of the nurses also demonstrated how the hospital prioritizes their patients when someone asked if people without private insurance could be treated at the hospital. While the answer was that patients would be directed to a public hospital as they provide free healthcare to everyone regardless of age, status, gender or citizenship, she said they will always stabilize a patient before doing so. Ultimately, the hospital is very well-functioning and has a great culture, another clear reflection of their successful embodiment of their mission statement.