It is my pleasure to report on the activities of the Clinical Performance and Sustainability Committee (the “Committee”) for the reporting period ended 31 March 2017. This mainly revolved around the Committee’s focus on the activities of the Group relating to the improvement of safety and quality of care in support of Mediclinic’s Patients First ethos, clinical risk management, accreditation process, various sustainability initiatives (including confirmation of key sustainability priorities, patient experience, employee engagement, sponsorships, ethics and fraud, governance of advertising, statement on slavery and human trafficking). The Committee also considered and approved the annual Clinical Services Report and the Sustainable Development Report.
COMMITTEE COMPOSITION AND MEETING ATTENDANCE
The composition and attendance of Committee meetings during the period under review are set out in Figure 1. The Committee members are suitably skilled and experienced. The Chief Clinical Officer, Dr Ronnie van der Merwe, and the Chief Corporate Services Officer (who is also responsible for the Group’s sustainable development management), Gert Hattingh, are invited on a permanent basis to attend and speak at all Committee meetings. Other relevant members of management are invited to attend Committee meetings, as required. The Company Secretary is secretary to the Committee and attends all meetings.
|1||Committee members’ biographies can be found in the Board of Directors page.|
|2||Since year end, the Committee met once and all members attended.|
|3||Robert Leu was appointed as member of the Committee on 17 March 2017.|
|4||Ian Tyler resigned as a Director of the Company on 21 February 2017.|
KEY AREAS OF ACTIVITY
The responsibilities and functions of the Committee are governed by a formal terms of reference, approved by the Board, which is subject to regular review, at least annually. As previously reported, the role of the Committee was expanded during the year to also include, apart from its clinical performance monitoring role, the monitoring of the Group’s sustainable development and to fulfil the statutory duties of a social and ethics committee in terms of the SA Companies Act in respect of certain of its South African subsidiaries.
The Committee met twice during the year under review, where the main focus was on:
In relation to the Committee’s clinical performance functions, the Committee is responsible for promoting a culture of excellence in patient safety, quality of care and patient experience. During the year, the Committee focused, inter alia, on the following:
- monitoring the clinical performance of the Group;
- evaluating patient safety, infection prevention and control, and quality improvement performance;
- evaluating compliance with the Company’s patient safety and quality clinical care standards, policies and procedure, and regulation and accreditation standards at the operating platforms; and
- reviewing and approving the annual Clinical Services Overview and the Clinical Services Report.
In relation to the Committee’s sustainability functions, the Committee is responsible for ensuring that the Group remains a good and responsible corporate citizen. During the year, the Committee focused, inter alia, on the following:
- reviewing the Group’s policies with regard to the commitment, governance and reporting of the Group’s sustainable development performance, including the Group Sustainable Development Policy, Group Environmental Policy and Code of Business Conduct and Ethics. These are available on the Company’s website;
- monitoring the sustainable development performance of the Group, with specific regard to stakeholder engagement (which include the results of the patient experience index and employee engagement survey), health and public safety, broad-based black economic empowerment in South Africa, labour relations and working conditions, reviewing and recommending to the Board the Company’s statement on slavery and human trafficking in terms of the Modern Slavery Act (available on the Company’s website), training and skills development of employees, management of the Group’s environmental impacts, fraud and ethics, compliance (which include the governance of advertising and compliance with consumer protection laws) and corporate social investment;
- confirming the key sustainability priorities, as recommended by management, reported in Sustainable Development Highlights and the Sustainable Development Report; and
- reviewing and approving the annual Sustainable Development Highlights and the Sustainable Development Report.
As referred to above, certain South African subsidiaries of the Company are required to appoint a social and ethics committee in terms of the SA Companies Act, unless such companies are subsidiaries of another company that has a social and ethics committee, and the social and ethics committee of that company will perform the functions required by this regulation on behalf of that subsidiary company. The Committee also performs the statutory functions required of a social and ethics committee in terms of the SA Companies Act.
The Committee considered the need for external assurance of the Group’s public reporting, particularly in relation to the Company’s sustainable development performance. The Committee is satisfied that the current level of combined assurance provides the necessary independent assurance over the quality and reliability of the information presented in relation to the Group’s clinical performance and sustainable development. The Committee will continue to monitor whether additional forms of assurance are required in future.
The Committee’s performance was internally evaluated by the members of the Committee by way of a self‑evaluation questionnaire, which results were considered by the Committee and the Board. Following feedback received from the self‑evaluation, the Board agreed to increase the number of Committee meetings to at least three per annum, to allow for greater discussion on clinical performance matters. No other significant issues that require improvement were identified and the Committee and the Board concluded that it operated effectively during the year.
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
In terms of the SA Companies Act, a social and ethics committee must, through one of its members, report to the shareholders at the company’s annual general meeting on the matters within its mandate. As the Committee is performing the role and function of a social and ethics committee in terms of the SA Companies Act, the Committee will fulfil this function by referring shareholders at the Company’s annual general meeting on 25 July 2017 to this report by the Committee, which should be read in conjunction with the Sustainable Development Report. Any specific questions to the Committee may be sent to the Company Secretary prior to the annual general meeting.
PRIORITIES FOR THE COMMITTEE IN 2017/18
For the coming financial year, the Committee will, among other matters, focus on the following:
- the further development of clinical performance measurement;
- strengthening the clinical expertise of the Committee; and
- the continued monitoring of the Company’s sustainable development.
Signed on behalf of the Clinical Performance and Sustainability Committee.
Dr Edwin Hertzog
Chairman of the Clinical Performance and Sustainability Committee
23 May 2017