Objective The aim of this study was to design and validate a health services access survey for households in Colombia to provide a methodological tool that allows the country to accumulate evidence of real-life access conditions experienced by the Colombian population. Methods A validation study with experts and a pilot study were performed. It was conducted in the municipality of Jamundi, located in the department of Valle del Cauca, Colombia. Probabilistic, multistage and stratified cluster sampling was carried out. The final sample was 215 households. Results The survey was composed of 63 questions divided into five modules: socio-demographic profile of the head of the household or adult informant, household socioeconomic profile, access to preventive services, access to curative and rehabilitative services and household out of pocket expenditure. In descriptive terms, the promotion of preventive services only reached 44%; the use of these services was always highest among children younger than one year old and up to the age of ten. The perceived need for emergency medical care and hospitalisation was between 82% and 85%, but 36% perceived the quality of care to be low or very low. Delays were experienced in medical visits with GPs and specialists. Discussion The designed survey is valid, relevant and representative of access to health services in Colombia. Empirically, the pilot showed institutional weaknesses in a municipality of the country, indicating that health coverage does not in practice mean real and effective access to health services.
Arrivillaga, M., Aristizabal, J. C., Pérez, M., & Estrada, V. E. (2016). Encuesta de acceso a servicios de salud para hogares colombianos. Gaceta Sanitaria, 30(6), 415–420. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gaceta.2016.05.008