To Speak Out Matters: Implication of Rural Road Network on Healthcare Accessibility among Residents in the Nzema East Municipality, Ghana
Road transport plays a significant role in rural healthcare accessibility and utilization. This study assessed the implication of poor rural road transport network on healthcare accessibility and utilization in Akango, Gbwira Eshiem and Ampanshie in the Nzema East Municipality of Ghana. The study employed mixed method approach using questionnaires and interviews to investigate the subject matter. A total of 253 respondents were randomly sampled for the survey and 13 were purposively selected for the interviews. Descriptive and regression analysis was used to analyze the questionnaire while thematic analysis was used to analyze the interviews. On the nature of road network linking the communities to healthcare facilities, the study found that, residents road network were muddy and slippery, had a lot of potholes, dusty during the dry season, eroded along hills, bridges randomly collapsed, and marshy areas easily got flooded. Importantly, the regression results revealed that complication of diseases, self-medication, difficulty in accessing referral services, challenge of transporting medical supplies to health facilities, difficulty of accessing maternity and childcare and the use of life-risking routes to access healthcare have a significant relationship with poor road network in the area. The study recommends the need for comprehensive and pragmatic measures to improve rural road transport network for improved healthcare.
Rural Road, Road Network, Healthcare Accessibility, Healthcare, Nzema East, Ghana
Bathiche, C., (2006). Livelihoods, Location and Public Transport: Opportunities for poverty reduction and risks of splintering urbanism in Nairobi's spatial planning. Development planning unit, University College London.
Heyen-Perschon, J. (2005). Report on current situation in the health sector of Ghana and possible roles for appropriate transport technology and transport related communication interventions. Institute for Transportation and Development Policy. Journal of business.
Ministry of Transport (2007). Unpublished. “Performance audit report of the Auditor-General on the maintenance of feeder roads in Ghana”. Department of feeder roads annual report. Accra, Ghana.
Sulemana, A. and Dinye, R. (2014). “Access to healthcare in rural communities in Ghana: A study of some selected communities in the Pru district”. European Journal of Research in Social Sciences, 2 (4), 122-132.
Ahenkan, A., and Boon, E. (2011). “Improving nutrition and health through non-timber forest products in Ghana”. Journal of Health, Population and Nutrition. Vol. 29 (2), 141 – 147.
Transaid, 2014. An investigation into the role of transport operator associations in shaping transport services in Africa’s rural areas. Report for AFCAP by Transaid, London, UK.
Starkey, P., Njenga, P., Kemtsop, G., Willilo, S., Opiyo, R. and Hine, J. (2013a). “Rural transport services indicators”: Final Report. International Forum for Rural Transport and Development (IFRTD), London, UK for Crown Agents, Sutton, UK. 158p.
World Health Report (2010). Health systems financing: the path to universal coverage. Geneva, World Health Organization.
Shrestha, D. and Workman, C., (2008). “The effects of restricted of restricted access on maternal health in remote and mountainous areas of rural Nepal”. Final report. District Roads Support Programme (DRSP) and rural health development project for International Forum for Rural Transport and Development (IFRTD), London, UK.
Khandker, S. R and Koolwal G. B, (2011). “Estimating the long-term impacts of rural roads: a dynamic panel approach”. Policy Research Working Paper 5867. World Bank, Washington DC, USA.
Broni, A. O., Aikins, I., Asibey, O. and Agyemang-Duah, P. (2014). “The contribution of transport (road) in healthcare delivery: A case study of Mankranso district hospital in the Ahafo Ano South District of Ashanti Region”. British Journal of Marketing Studies. Vol.2, No.4, pp. 30-51. Available at: www.eajournals.org. Accessed on 12/09/17.
Atuoye, N. K., Dixon,J., Rishworth, A., Galaa, S., Z., Boamah, A., S and Isaac Luginaah, I. (2014). Can she make it? Transportation barriers to accessing maternal and child health care services in rural Ghana. Journal of Health Service Research.
Jackman, D., Myrick, F., Yonge, O. J. (2010). Rural Nursing in Canada: A voice unheard. Journal of rural nursing and care, 10 (1), 60-76.
Thornhill, A. S. and Lewis, P. M. (2012). Research method for business students: 6th edition. Pearson Education limited. Prentice Hall.
Ministry of Health. (2014). Holistic assessment report of the health center program of work 2013, Accra, Ghana.
World Health Report (2013). Health financing for universal coverage and health system performance: concept and implication for policy, Geneva, World Health Organization.
United Nations. (2015). Ghana Millennium Development Goals Report, Ghana, Accra.
United Nations. (2018). Sustainable Development Goal Report, United Nations, New York, USA.
Ministry of Health. (2004). “A profile of health inequities in Ghana”. Ministry of Health. Accra, Ghana.
Ghana Statistical Service, (2010). 2010 Population and Housing Census: Summary Report of Final Results. Accra, Ghana.
Institute of Medicine, (2010). “Access to Health Care in America”. National Academies of Science Press, http: //www.nhats.org/scripts/default.htm.
Babinard, J. and Roberts, P., (2006). “Maternal and child mortality development goals”. What can the transport sector do? Transport paper TP-12, World Bank, Washington DC, USA.
Bell, C. and van Dillen, S., (2012). “Affordability of Public Transport: A methodological clarification”. Journal of Transport Economics and Policy. 45 (3) pp 437-456.
Brenneman, A and Kerf, M., (2002). “Infrastructure and poverty linkages”: a literature review. International Labour Organisation, Geneva, Switzerland.
Lema, C., (2007). “Makete integrated rural transport project: A case study of MIRTP and its impacts on rural transport policies in Tanzania”. International Forum for Rural Transport and Development (IFRTD). London.
World Health Organization. (2015).” Health in 2015: from MDGs, Millennium Development Goals to SDGs, Sustainable Development Goals”. Geneva, Switzerland.
Bourke, L., Humphreys, J. Wakerman, J., JudyTaylor, J. (2014). Understanding rural and remote health: A framework for analysis in Australia. Esevier Journal of Health and Place 18, 496-503. Available at: www.elsevier.com/locate/healthplace.
Giddens, A. (1986). Theory of structuration: a guide to rural health service delivery, Thousands of oaks, sage.
Nzema East Municipal Assembly (2015). “Medium Term Development Plan (2010-2013): Under the Ghana Shared Growth and Development Agenda”. District Planning Coordinating Unit. Nzema, Ghana.
Tashakkori, A., and Teddlie, C. (1998). Mixed methedology: Conbining qualitative and quantitative approaches. Thousand Oaks: CA: Sage.
Creswell, W., J., (2014) ‘Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative and Mixed Methods Approaches’ 4thd ed. SAGE Publications, Inc. 2455 Teller Road, Thousand Oaks, California 91320.
Saunders, M. Lewis, P. and Thornhill, A. (2012). Research Method for business students (6th ed.), Pearson Educational Ltd.
Braun, V. and Clark,V. (2006). Using thematic analysis in psychology. Journal of Qualitative Research in Psychology. 3. Pp 77-101 Available online at: www.qual.Researchpsychology.com. On 18/01/2018.
Gyasi, R. M., Asante, F., Segbefia, A. Y., Kabila, A., Mensah C. M., Siaw L. P., Eshun, G. and Adjei P. O. (2015). “Does spatial location matter? Traditional therapy utilization among the general population in a Ghanaian rural and urban setting”. Complementary Therapies in Medicine, 23 (3), 439-450.
Tawiah (2015). Implication of road network on health care delivery in Ashanti region of Ghana, Kumasi, Ghana.
Donnges, C., Edmonds, G. and Johannessen, B. (2007). Rural Road Maintenance - Sustaining the Benefits of Improved Access (SETP 19) Bangkok, International Labour Office.
Ministry of Health. (2012). Independent reviewed report of health sector program of work 2013, Accra, Ghana.