Impact of the presence of private hospitals on the spatial equality of healthcare accessibility in Beijing, China

Submitted: 27 September 2022
Accepted: 19 November 2022
Published: 29 November 2022
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Providing equal geographical access to hospitals, either in the public or private healthcare sector, is vital and will benefit public health in general. Against the background of the partial privatization of the healthcare sector, the impact of private hospitals on equal healthcare access has been a highly neglected issue. We have applied an assessment methodology to study this situation by comparing the status quo scenario with one without private hospitals, based on accessibility analysis and spatial equality measurements. The case study of Beijing, China revealed a double-sided impact. With the presence of private hospitals, the Gini coefficient of spatial accessibility in urban districts was reduced from 0.03391 to 0.03211, while it increased from 0.1734 to 0.1914 in suburban districts. Thus, private hospitals improved spatial equality in urban districts in Beijing but jeopardized it in suburban districts. These research findings should enlighten policymakers to promote healthcare equality but would also need to be repeated in some other big cities.

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How to Cite

Dai, T., Guo, K., Zhao, J., & Lu, W. (2022). Impact of the presence of private hospitals on the spatial equality of healthcare accessibility in Beijing, China. Geospatial Health, 17(2). https://doi.org/10.4081/gh.2022.1157