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Health needs assessment of the residents of the informal settlements in South-eastern Iran: A case study of Bam city
Naeimeh Poortaheri1, Khalil Alimohammadzadeh2*, Seyed Mojtaba Hosseini3, Ali Maher4, Mohammadkarim Bahadori5
۱ PhD Student in Health Services Management, North Tehran Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran
۲ Associate Professor, Department of Health Services Management, North Tehran Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran/Health Economics Policy Research Center, Tehran Medical Sciences Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran
۳ Assistant Professor, Department of Health Services Management, North Tehran Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran
۴ Assistant Professor, Department of Health Policy, School of Management and Medical Education, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
۵ Full Professor, Health Management Research Center, Baqiyatallah University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
|Date of Submission||۲۸-Oct-2020|
|Date of Acceptance||۲۱-Dec-2020|
|Date of Web Publication||۳۰-Jun-2021|
Associate Professor, Department of Health Services Management, North Tehran Branch, Health Economics Policy Research Center, Tehran Medical Sciences Islamic Azad University, Tehran
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
BACKGROUND: Informal settlements are considered as one of the social problems in societies. As the residents do not have adequate access to basic services, including health services, their health is at risk. This study was conducted to evaluate the access to health services and determine the health needs of informal settlements in Bam city.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: This cross-sectional study was carried out in the spring of 2020 in Bam. The sample size was 400 residents of informal settlements in Bam, and the multi-stage random cluster sampling was used. A researcher-made questionnaire was used to collect the required data. The validity of the questionnaire was confirmed using the content validity, and its reliability was 85% by Cronbach’s alpha. The data were analyzed using the SPSS version 23 software and descriptive statistics (frequency, mean, standard deviation, and percentage) as well as analytical statistics (Mann–Whitney and Kruskal–Wallis tests).
RESULTS: More than 50% of the individuals had good access to general practitioners and health centers. However, over 50% had poor access to dental, para-clinical, specialist, and hospital services. Furthermore, 49.3% of the people assessed their health status as poor in the previous year. A total of 46 items in the areas of communicable and non-communicable diseases, women’s health, mental and social health and addiction, environmental health, etc., were identified as the most important health needs of the informal settlement residents.
CONCLUSION: Informal settlements are facing various health problems including environmental health, mental and social health, and addiction, meeting which requires collaboration of all stakeholders as well as provision of a comprehensive program and appropriate service packages.
Keywords: Bam, health access, health needs assessment, informal settlements, South-eastern Iran