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Open AccessArticle

Estimating the Spatial Accessibility to Blood Group and Rhesus Type Point-of-Care Testing for Maternal Healthcare in Ghana

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Discipline of Public Health Medicine, School 0.0of Nursing and Public Health, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban 4001, South Africa
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Research for Sustainable Development Consult, Sunyani, Ghana
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Adu Manu Kwame Consult, Accra, Ghana
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Faculty of Health and Allied Sciences, Catholic University College of Ghana, Fiapre, Sunyani, Ghana
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Regional Health Directorate, Ghana Health Service, Upper East Region, Bolgatanga, Ghana
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Diagnostics 2019, 9(4), 175; https://doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics9040175
Received: 29 September 2019 / Revised: 21 October 2019 / Accepted: 29 October 2019 / Published: 5 November 2019
Background: In Ghana, a blood group and rhesus type test is one of the essential recommended screening tests for women during antenatal care since blood transfusion is a key intervention for haemorrhage. We estimated the spatial accessibility to health facilities for blood group and type point-of-care (POC) testing in the Upper East Region (UER), Ghana. Methods: We assembled the attributes and spatial data of hospitals, clinics, and medical laboratories providing blood group and rhesus type POC testing in the UER. We also obtained the spatial data of all the 131 towns, and 94 health centres and community-based health planning and services (CHPS) compounds providing maternal healthcare in the region. We further obtained the topographical data of the region, and travel time estimated using an assumed tricycle speed of 20 km/h. We employed ArcGIS 10.5 to estimate the distance and travel time and locations with poor spatial access identified for priority improvement. Findings: In all, blood group and rhesus type POC testing was available in 18 health facilities comprising eight public hospitals and six health centres, one private hospital, and three medical laboratories used as referral points by neighbouring health centres and CHPS compounds without the service. Of the 94 health centres and CHPS compounds, 51.1% (48/94) and 66.4% (87/131) of the towns were within a 10 km range to a facility providing blood group and rhesus type testing service. The estimated mean distance to a health facility for blood group and rhesus POC testing was 8.9 ± 4.1 km, whilst the mean travel time was 17.8 ± 8.3 min. Builsa South district recorded the longest mean distance (25.6 ± 7.4 km), whilst Bongo district recorded the shortest (3.1 ± 1.9 km). The spatial autocorrelation results showed the health facilities providing blood group and rhesus type POC testing were randomly distributed in the region (Moran Index = 0.29; z-score = 1.37; p = 0.17). Conclusion: This study enabled the identification of district variations in spatial accessibility to blood group and rhesus type POC testing in the region for policy decisions. We urge the health authorities in Ghana to evaluate and implement recommended POC tests such as slide agglutination tests for blood group and rhesus type testing in resource-limited settings. View Full-Text
Keywords: spatial accessibility; blood group; rhesus type; point-of-care testing; maternal healthcare; Upper East Region; Ghana spatial accessibility; blood group; rhesus type; point-of-care testing; maternal healthcare; Upper East Region; Ghana
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Kuupiel, D.; Adu, K.M.; Bawontuo, V.; Adogboba, D.A.; Mashamba-Thompson, T.P. Estimating the Spatial Accessibility to Blood Group and Rhesus Type Point-of-Care Testing for Maternal Healthcare in Ghana. Diagnostics 2019, 9, 175.

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