An Assessment of Care-Seeking Behavior in Asikuma-Odoben-Brakwa District: A Triple Pluralistic Health Sector Approach

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Abstract

Discussions and studies on Ghana’s pluralistic health care system usually ignore or downplay self-care as a crucial sector in this system of care. In view of this, this study uses a triple sector approach of the pluralistic health care system as advocated by Kleinman to assess care-seeking behaviors of residents in the Asikuma-Odoben-Brakwa District (Ghana). The results of cross-tabulation analysis demonstrate that respondents’ general care–seeking behavior is different from the type of care sought for last illness before the study. Data for the study were obtained from 227 urban and rural respondents in the study district in 2013. The findings indicate that factors such as geographic location, health insurance, and perception of the cost of professional care had a bearing on residents’ general care–seeking behavior. However, age, sex, relationship status, economic status, and proximity to nearest biomedical care service influenced the type of treatment sought for last illness. The approach use of the study demonstrates that self-care remains a general avenue of care for residents, whereas in times of severe illness, respondents often rely on professional biomedical care. The use of professional indigenous care services is generally low due to the financial burden associated with its use.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalSAGE Open
Volume7
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2017

Keywords

  • care-seeking behavior
  • Ghana
  • medical pluralism
  • self-care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities(all)
  • Social Sciences(all)

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