Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Rev Saude Publica. 2003 Jun;37(3):372-8. Epub 2003 Jun 3.

Outpatient health service utilization and associated factors: a population-based study.

Author information

1
Departamento de Medicina Interna, Fundação Universidade Federal do Rio Grande, Rio Grande, RS, Brazil. rams@iname.com

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To identify factors that lead people to visit a doctor in Brazil and assess differences between socioeconomic groups.

METHODS:

A cross-sectional study comprising 1,260 subjects aged 15 or more was carried out in southern Brazil. Demographic, socioeconomic, health needs and regular source of care data were analyzed concerning visits to a doctor within two months from the interview. Adjusted prevalence ratios and 95% confidence intervals were calculated using Poisson regression.

RESULTS:

Adjusted PR showed that women having stressful life events, health insurance, and a regular doctor increased the outcome. A dose-related response was found with self-reported health, and the probability of visiting a doctor increased with health needs. Analysis in the chronic disease group revealed that uneducated lower income subjects had a 62% reduction in the chance of visiting a doctor compared to uneducated higher income ones. However, as it was seen a significant interaction between income and education, years of schooling increased utilization in this group.

CONCLUSIONS:

Results suggest the existence of health inequity in the poorest group that could be overcome with education. Specific measures reinforcing the importance of having a regular doctor may also improve access in the underserved group.

PMID:
12792690
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Scientific Electronic Library Online
Loading ...
Support Center