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Inequity in the distribution of rural family physicians in Iran: a cross sectional study

Rasoul Tabari-Khomeiran (Social determinants of health Research Center, Guilan University of Medical Sciences, Rasht, Islamic Republic of Iran)
Elham Ehsani-Chimeh (National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran)
Ali Davoudi Kiakalayeh (Guilan Road Trauma Research Center, Guilan University of Medical Sciences, Rasht, Islamic Republic of Iran)
Enayatollah Homaie Rad (Social determinants of health Research Center, Guilan University of Medical Sciences, Rasht, Islamic Republic of Iran)
Sajad Delavari (Health Human Resources Research Center, School of Management and Information Sciences, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Islamic Republic of Iran)

International Journal of Human Rights in Healthcare

ISSN: 2056-4902

Article publication date: 18 July 2019

Issue publication date: 19 July 2019

Abstract

Purpose

Equal distribution of health human resources is a major issue to achieve human rights in healthcare. Rural family physicians (RFPs) as a part of health human resources play an important role in delivering health services, so the purpose of this paper is to calculate amount of inequity in distribution of RFPs in Iran.

Design/methodology/approach

In this study, the authors tried to find inequity in the distribution of RFPs in the provinces of Iran. For this purpose, inequity indices containing concentration curves and indices were calculated by ranking health-adjusted life expectancy (HALE). Furthermore, a regression model was estimated to find the pattern and influencing factors of inequity in the distribution of RFPs.

Findings

The number of male RFPs was significantly higher in Sistan va Baloochestan, and in the same line, the number of female RFPs was higher in Zanjan province. Concentration index of total RFPs was 0.0568 (not significant) (males= 0.041, females= 0.0718). The results of regression model showed that HALE and per capita GDP did not have any significant relationship with RFPs distribution (HALE p=0.753, GDP p=0.792).

Originality/value

The RFP plan was successful in enhancing equal access to physician and health care services relatively. However, gender imbalance in distribution of RFPs was high especially in less-developed regions.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank Saeedeh Nemati for her English editing.

Citation

Tabari-Khomeiran, R., Ehsani-Chimeh, E., Davoudi Kiakalayeh, A., Homaie Rad, E. and Delavari, S. (2019), "Inequity in the distribution of rural family physicians in Iran: a cross sectional study", International Journal of Human Rights in Healthcare, Vol. 12 No. 4, pp. 258-266. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJHRH-12-2018-0077

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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