Factors Determining the Choice of Healthcare Providers in Uganda
Keywords:determinants, demand, multinomial logit, healthcare provider, Uganda
Since early 1990s, the government of Uganda has implemented a number of reforms in the health sector, such as decentralization of health service delivery and removal of user fees in public health facilities aimed at achieving equitable access to quality healthcare. Despite these reforms, low levels of healthcare utilisation has remained a serious challenge in Uganda; and out-of-pocket health expenditure remains very high: at 41% of total health expenditure. This study seeks to examine factors that influence patients’ choice of healthcare providers in Uganda. A multinomial logistic model was estimated using data from the 2019/20 Uganda National Household Survey. The results showed that cost of healthcare, household welfare, level of education insurance, and region were significant in determining the choice of a healthcare provider. Duration of illness, distance to a health facility and type of illness were also significant determinants. The findings highlight the need for the government to introduce a national health insurance scheme to reduce out-of-pocket payments for healthcare, which will enable vulnerable individuals visit health facilities. It should also increase investments in the health sector by constructing and equipping more health facilities.
JEL Classification: C25, I11, I12, I18