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Paper Information

Journal:   MEDICAL JOURNAL OF THE ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF IRAN (MJIRI)   2018 , Volume 32 , Number 1; Page(s) 0 To 0.

The impact of rural health insurance and the family physician program on hospitalizations, a beforeafter study at the county level conducted in Tehran province, Iran



* Department of Health Management and Economics, School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Science, Tehran, Iran
Background: The health insurance and family physician reform in Iran were implemented in 2005. This study was conducted to assess the effect of these reforms on avoidable hospitalizations among the rural population of Eslam-shahr County, Iran. Methods: We conducted a before-after study in Eslam-shahr County’ s single existing hospital. This county is a part of the Tehran Province of Iran. The demographic characteristics and diagnostic codes of the rural population that were hospitalized during the 2 years leading to, and after the reforms were extracted from the hospital’ s electronic information system. A list of 61 three-character and 131 four-character AHs codes were developed based on the literature review. We estimated a logistic regression model which included gender and age as independent variables to assess changes in the probability of avoidable hospitalizations following reform implementation. Analyses were carried out using STATA version 13. Results: We recorded 817 rural hospitalizations before and 967 hospitalizations after reform implementation, suggesting that hospitalization growth after the reforms was almost 18. 4%. The logistic regression results show that the probability of avoidable hospitalizations after the interventions had decreased compared to before the interventions were put into place (OR: 0. 46; 95% CI: 0. 24-0. 88). Also, the probability of AHs among the 60< year-old age group was considerably higher compared to other age groups. No statistical relationship was found between avoidable hospitalizations and gender. Conclusion: The reforms may have had a mixed effect on hospitalization. They may result in increased hospitalizations due to responding to the unmet needs of the population, and simultaneously they may lead to a decrease in avoidable hospitalizations and eliminate the costs imposed by them upon the health system.
Keyword(s): Family physician,Health insurance,Hospitalization,Rural health
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