The following guidelines have been prepared in order to provide assistance to those accepting and making donations of Hospital equipment and supplies. It should also be useful to those planning to buy equipment and supplies.
So why does both the Hospital and donors need these guidelines for donations? Although donations of equipment, materials and supplies may appear to improve the efficiency of health facilities, experience has shown that equipment donations may cause the Hospital more long-term problems than benefits. The Hospital has therefore developed clear policies on their equipment requirements. These will then be shown to potential donors who should then respect them. Before a donation agreement is finally settled, both the Hospital and the donor should carry out a thorough evaluation of the requirements and the offer. The final choice of equipment will probably be constrained by cost, environmental and operational conditions, the availability and on-going supply of spare parts, and the quality and availability of specialist maintenance services.
The donation of drugs will be carefully monitored. The Hospital will only accept drugs that it specifically needs following in-depth discussions with the donor. All donated drugs must have, as a minimum, a 5 month expiry date, and all labels must be in English. The Hospital will take into consideration the following:
Where possible, use country standard medical equipment. This will ensure a greater likelihood of economical purchase of spare parts and their long-term availability
Specify clearly the items to accompany the equipment donation including the availability of user and service manuals in English, and test equipment
The availability of in-country expertise in operation and maintenance procedures
The involvement of appropriate Hospital staff who should be asked to advise upon a) installation, operation, and maintenance requirements, b) the training requirements of both users and staff technicians, c) the essential spare parts required, d) the appropriateness of the equipment in terms of running costs and contribution towards the Hospital's health care objectives Complete a copy of the check-list below and include the issues high-lighted above. This will ensure that the donor receives enough information to make an appropriate response
Communicate alternative preferences. If a financial contribution would be more appropriate than a donation of equipment from abroad then this should be investigated with the donor
Ask the donor to ensure proper packaging. The location of the Hospital means that the consignment is likely to have to endure long periods of rough handling especially over local roads