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Reform strategies in Georgia and their impact on health care provision in rural areas: evidence from a household survey


  • Gotsadze, George
  • Zoidze, Akaki
  • Vasadze, Otar


The transition resulting from the break-up of the Soviet Union significantly affected the health care systems and population health status in the newly independent States. The available body of evidence suggests that contraction of public resources resulting from economic slowdown has led to the proliferation of out-of-pocket payments and private spending becoming a major source of finance to health service provision to the population. Emerging financial access barriers impede adequate utilization of health care services. Most transition countries embarked on reforming health systems and health care financing in order to tackle this problem. However, little evidence is available about the impact of these reforms on improved access and health outcomes. This paper aims to contribute to the assessment of the impact of health sector reforms in Georgia. It mainly focuses on changes in the patterns of health services utilization in rural areas of the country as a function of implemented changes in health care financing on a primary health care (PHC) level. Our findings are based on a household survey which was carried out during summer 2002. Conclusions derived from the findings could be of interest to policy makers in transitional countries. The paper argues that health financing reforms on the PHC level initiated by the Government of Georgia, aimed at decreasing financial access barriers for the population in the countryside, have rendered initial positive results and improved access to essential PHC services. However, to sustain and enhance this attainments the government should ensure equity, improve the targeting mechanisms for the poor and mobilize additional public and private funds for financing primary care in the country.

Suggested Citation

  • Gotsadze, George & Zoidze, Akaki & Vasadze, Otar, 2005. "Reform strategies in Georgia and their impact on health care provision in rural areas: evidence from a household survey," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 60(4), pages 809-821, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:60:y:2005:i:4:p:809-821

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. David H. Peters & Abdo S. Yazbeck & Rashmi R. Sharma & G. N. V. Ramana & Lant H. Pritchett & Adam Wagstaff, 2002. "Better Health Systems for India's Poor : Findings, Analysis, and Options," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 14080, December.
    2. Falkingham, Jane, 2004. "Poverty, out-of-pocket payments and access to health care: evidence from Tajikistan," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 247-258, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Obrizan, Maksym, 2019. "Diverging trends in health care use between 2010 and 2016: Evidence from three groups of transition countries," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 19-29.
    2. Obrizan, Maksym, 2017. "Does EU membership prevent crowding out of public health care? Evidence from 28 transition countries," MPRA Paper 81708, University Library of Munich, Germany.


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