Spatial distribution of the total number of medical devices in turkey: a classification analysis
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KünyeCinaroglu, S., & Baser, O. (April 01, 2017). Spatial distribution of total number of medical devices in Turkey: A classification analysis. International Journal of Medicine and Public Health, Volume: 19 Issue: 7 Pages: 703
Objectives: The unbalanced distribution of medical technologies and devices between rural and urban areas is a major problem for developing countries including Turkey. After the establishment of Public Hospital Unions (PHUs) in Turkey, legislative changes were made to improve the autonomy of public hospitals. This study utilizes spatial analysis to assess the distribution of medical device use in Turkey using PHUs as a decision making unit. Methods: Data from the PHUs’ statistics year book for the year 2014 was assessed. The total number of PHUs is 89. A Hierarchical cluster analysis was performed to classify PHUs according to the total number of medical devices. The Euclidean distance measure and Wards methods were used in the analysis for classification. Results: Study results show that, in Turkey, PHUs were categorized into two clusters based on the total number of medical devices available. Regarding the spatial distribution of the clusters, the first cluster represents PHUs in rural areas, and the second represents PHUs located in urban areas of Turkey. PHUs representing large cities with high population density were included in one cluster, and all other PHUs were included in the second. Statistical test results indicated that the two clusters differ according to the total number of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI: t= -14.10, p< 0.01), computed tomography (CT) scan (t= -15.75, p< 0.01), mammography (t= -11.40, p< 0.01), ultrasonography (t= -14.62, p< 0.01), and electrocardiography (EKG; t= -12.29, p< 0.01) equipment available. Conclusions: It is advisable for health policy makers and health technology assessment authorities in Turkey to focus on the differences between rural and urban areas of the country when determining the need for medical devices.