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Open AccessArticle

Evaluating Disparities in Elderly Community Care Resources: Using a Geographic Accessibility and Inequality Index

1
Department of Medical Sociology and Social Work, Chung Shan Medical University, Taichung 402, Taiwan
2
Social Service Section, Chung Shan Medical University Hospital, Taichung 402, Taiwan
3
Department of Medical Informatics, Chung Shan Medical University, Taichung 402, Taiwan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(7), 1353; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15071353
Received: 6 June 2018 / Revised: 24 June 2018 / Accepted: 26 June 2018 / Published: 27 June 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health Care Equity)
This study evaluated geographic accessibility and utilized assessment indices to investigate disparities in elderly community care resource distribution. The data were derived from Taiwanese governmental data in 2017, including 3,148,283 elderly individuals (age 65+), 7681 villages, and 1941 community care centers. To identify disparities in geographic accessibility, we compared the efficacy of six measurements and proposed a composite index to identify levels of resource inequality from the Gini coefficient and “median-mean” skewness. Low village-level correlation (0.038) indicated inconsistencies between the demand populations and community care center distribution. Method M6 (calculated accessibility of nearest distance-decay accounting for population of villages, supplier loading, and elderly walkability) was identified as the most comprehensive disparity measurement. Community care policy assessment requires a comprehensive and weighted calculation process, including the elderly walkability distance-decay factor, demand population, and supplier loading. Three steps were suggested for elderly policy planning and improvement in future. View Full-Text
Keywords: geographic accessibility; spatial inequality; resource allocation; community care; social support; elderly health; aging in place geographic accessibility; spatial inequality; resource allocation; community care; social support; elderly health; aging in place
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Wu, H.-C.; Tseng, M.-H. Evaluating Disparities in Elderly Community Care Resources: Using a Geographic Accessibility and Inequality Index. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15, 1353.

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