Access to Health Services
There are significant spatial differences in the availability of health services. Urban areas typically have better access to health services than rural areas. Even within most urban environments, there are areas with a shortage of health professionals, hospitals, and clinics. These shortages often occur in high poverty areas.
Why Spatial Context Matters
Access to cancer screening services.
Access to recent advances in cancer diagnosis and treatment.
Measures of Access
Place-based access: distance from home or work location to provider offices; People-based access: cumulative opportunities for access along daily travel paths
Barriers to Access
Geographic barriers: freeways, rivers, lack of public transit; Socio-economic barriers: poverty, lack of education, lack of health insurance coverage, and cultural and language barriers.