Turkish health system reform from the people’s perspective: a cross sectional study
1 United Nations University-International Institute for Global Health (UNU-IIGH), Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
2 International Centre for Case-Mix and Clinical Coding (ITCC), University Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical Centre, Jalan Yaacob Latiff, Cheras, Kuala Lumpur 56000, Malaysia
3 Department of Econometrics, Economics and Management Sciences Faculty, Gazi University, Room No: 310 Besevler/, Ankara 06500, Turkey
BMC Health Services Research 2014, 14:30 doi:10.1186/1472-6963-14-30Published: 22 January 2014
Since 2003, Turkey has implemented major health care reforms to develop easily accessible, high-quality, efficient, and effective healthcare services for the population. The purpose of this study was to bring out opinions of the Turkish people on health system reform process, focusing on several aspects of health system and assessing whether the public prefer the current health system or that provided a decade ago.
A cross sectional survey study was carried out in Turkey to collect data on people’s opinions on the healthcare reforms. Data was collected via self administered household’s structured questionnaire. A five-point Likert-type scale was used to score the closed comparative statements. Each statement had response categories ranging from (1) “strongly agree” to (5) “strongly disagree.” A total of 482 heads of households (response rate: 71.7%) with the mean age of (46.60 years) were selected using a multi stage sampling technique from seven geographical regions in Turkey from October 2011 to January 2012. Multiple logistic regressions were performed to identify significant contributing factors in this study.
Employing descriptive statistics it is observed that among the respondents, more than two third of the population believes that the changes have had positive effects on the health system. A vast majority of respondents (82.0%) believed that there was an increase in accessibility, 73.7% thought more availability of health resources, 72.6% alleged improved quality of care, and 72.6% believed better attitude of politician/mass media due to the changes in the last 10 years. Indeed, the majority of respondents (77.6%) prefer the current health care system than the past. In multivariate analysis, there was a statistically significant relationship between characteristics and opinions of the respondents. The elderly, married females, perceived themselves healthy and those who believe that people are happier now than 10 years ago have a more positive opinion of the changes. While, the single unemployed from rural region who perceived themselves as unhealthy and believe that people are unhappy now compare to ten years ago showed less positive opinions.
Hence, we conclude that from the people’s perspective overall the health system reforms were most likely successful.