Health services utilization of people having and not having a regular doctor in Canada


Abstract: Canada having a universal health insurance plan that provides hospital and physician benefits offers a natural experiment of whether continuity ofcare actually provides lower or higher utilization of services. The question we are evaluating is whether Canadians, who have a regular physician, use more health resources than those who do not have one? Using two statistical methods, including propensity score matching and zero-inflated negative binomial regression, we analyzed data from the 2010 and 2007/2008 Canadian Community Health Surveys separately to document differences between people self-reportedly having and not having a regular doctor in the utilization of general practitioner, specialist, and hospitalservices. The results showed, consistently for all two statistical methods and two datasets used, that people reportedly having a regular doctor used more healthcare services than a matched group of people who was self-reportedly not having a regular doctor. For specialist and hospital utilization, the statistically significant differences were in the likelihood if the service was used but not in the number of specialist visits or hospital nights among users.

Publication Type: Journal Articles

Year of Publication: 2016

Topics: Healthcare Services

Authors: Thanh Nguyen, John Rapoport

ISSN (online): 1099-1751

Journal Title: International Journal of Health Planning and Management

Pages: Epub ahead of print