Who Has Access to Public Health Services? Understanding Spatial and Non-Spatial Variations in the Utilization of Primary and Secondary Public Health Care Services in Guatemala

Astrid Maria Arriaza Solares , Ministry of Public Health
Andrew "Amos" R. Channon, University of Southampton

Access to health care preserves population health status and promotes equity in health and wellbeing. Access to health care is understood as a dynamic set of factors that mediate between the potential to gain health care and the realization of using health care. Realized access provides evidence about the factors associated with health care-seeking experience and utilization of services. Understanding the factors associated with utilization provide insights for guide policy towards promoting access. Measuring realized access to health care involves the consideration of factors that predispose and enable health-seeking behaviour, including geographic accessibility to health facilities. Reduced access is expected at greater distances to travel towards facilities; moreover, the spatial influence over utilization can be modified when considering additional factors of access such as the type of health service and health condition. This research aims to explore the factors associated with realized access in Guatemala by measuring the utilization of primary and secondary public health services for different health conditions. We use individual-level data about visits to primary and secondary public health care facilities in Guatemala. We explain utilization of health care services through distance to travel, socio-demographic characteristics and characteristics of the health care provider for different morbidities classification. Preliminary results illustrate that higher contact with public health services occurs at primary health care. Antenatal care services encompasses are the most frequent reason for using public facilities. Further findings about variation of utilization of health care services according to distance to travel, socio-economic characteristics and health condition are expected.

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 Presented in Session P2. Poster Session Ageing, Health and Mortality