Evaluation of the Plan of General Practitioners Zone in Rural Areas. Study Based on the Perception of the Physicians Participating.

Monday, 11 July 2016: 09:00
Location: Hörsaal 10 (Juridicum)
Oral Presentation
Pablo RIVERA, Universitat de Barcelona, Spain
Jorge RAMIREZ, University of California San Francisco, USA
Elena SANCHEZ, Departmento de Biología Vegetal, Spain
Rural areas have scarce medical resources. Initiatives to address this situation in Latin America exist, but have been rarely evaluated. The Chilean Rural Practitioner Programme, a policy of recruitment and retention of physicians in rural areas, has been stable over time. The aim of this study was to examine how physicians who participate in this police evaluate it and determinants of this evaluation. A mixed-method study was designed. Qualitative assessment was performed trough in-depth interviews and focus group. Different areas of interest were determined and a specific instrument was developed for quantitative assessment. This instrument consisted in a nationally representative online survey, stratified by sub-regional administrative levels. Questionnaires were obtained from 202 physicians (60.5 response rate). The overall experience was evaluated with a 5.75 (in a 1 to 7 scale). Participants gave a greater positive evaluation to climatic conditions and income. Infrastructure, human resources, and workload obtained lowest scores. Evaluation of social relationships at destination place was the only condition associated significantly to overall assessment of the experience. Overall, the experience was positively evaluated, even beyond specific evaluations of areas of interest determined previously. Despite its limitations, this study fills a gap in the existing literature in Chile and provides information at national level to improve retention policies of human resources for health in rural areas.