The relationship between region of residence, socio-demographic factors, and healthcare utilization among Saudi citizens: insights from the 2013 Saudi Health Interview Survey

Motab Aljohani*, Michael Donnelly, Ibrahim Al Sumaih, Ciaran O'Neill

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
34 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Background: There is a dearth of research on the nature and extent of variation in patterns of health service use in Saudi Arabia. This is an important gap in knowledge, given ongoing efforts to improve service provision and delivery. This study examined the relationship between the region of residence and socio-demographic factors and patterns of health service use in Saudi Arabia.

Methods: Data were taken from the 2013 Saudi Health Interview Survey (SHIS), a national multistage survey of individuals aged 15 years and above in Saudi Arabia. Data included measures of service use, respondent health, socio-demographic characteristics, and region or area of residence. Descriptive statistics, Chi-square tests, and multivariable logistic regression analyses were used to describe the data and examine the likelihood of a respondent visiting a doctor or healthcare professional in the preceding 12 months. In addition, the analyses examined the role of health and socio-demographic characteristics within selected regions.

Results: The increased likelihood of using health services in terms of visiting a doctor or healthcare professional was related to poor health status, being female, married, having a low income, and residing in particular regions. Respondents aged
Conclusion: Region of residence and income level, in particular, may help to explain the likelihood of primary care use in Saudi Arabia and the distinct patterns of service use in relation to regional and socio-demographic characteristics. The relationship between regional variation in service utilization and the socio-demographic characteristics of respondents may reflect differences with respect to population need, enabling, and predisposing factors as represented in Anderson's Behavioral Model (ABM) of health service use. The findings from this study underscore the importance of considering region or area of residence when seeking to understand the utilization of health services, particularly primary care services.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1252340
Number of pages10
JournalFrontiers in Medicine
Volume10
Early online date06 Nov 2023
DOIs
Publication statusEarly online date - 06 Nov 2023

Keywords

  • primary care
  • health service use
  • healthcare utilization
  • healthcare determinants
  • healthcare access

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