IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Self-reported health care seeking behavior in rural Ethiopia: Evidence from clinical vignettes

  • Mebratie, A.D.
  • Van de Poel, E.
  • Debebe, Z.Y.
  • Abebaw Ejigie, D.
  • Alemu, G.
  • Bedi, A.S.

Between 2000 and 2011, Ethiopia rapidly expanded its health-care infrastructure recording an 18-fold increase in the number of health posts and a 7-fold increase in the number of health centers. However, annual per capita outpatient utilization has increased only marginally. The extent to which individuals forego necessary health care, especially why and who foregoes care are issues that have received little attention in the context of low-income countries. This paper uses five clinical vignettes covering a range of context-specific child and adult-related diseases to explore the health-seeking behavior of rural Ethiopian households. We find almost universal preference for modern care. There is a systematic relationship between socioeconomic status and choice of providers mainly for adult-related conditions with households in higher consumption quintiles more likely to seek care in health centers, private/NGO clinics as opposed to health posts. Similarly, delays in care-seeking behavior are apparent mainly for adult-related conditions. The differences in care seeking behavior between adult and child related conditions may be attributed to the recent spread of health posts which have focused on raising awareness of maternal and child health. Overall, the analysis suggests that the lack of health-care utilization is not driven by the inability to recognize health problems or due to a low perceived need for modern care but due to other factors.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by International Institute of Social Studies of Erasmus University Rotterdam (ISS), The Hague in its series ISS Working Papers - General Series with number 551.

in new window

Date of creation: 04 Feb 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ems:euriss:38648
Contact details of provider: Postal: Kortenaerkade 12, 2518 AX Den Haag
Phone: +31 70 4260 460
Fax: +31 70 4260 799
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Teresa Bago d'Uva & Eddy Van Doorslaer & Maarten Lindeboom & Owen O'Donnell, 2008. "Does reporting heterogeneity bias the measurement of health disparities?," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 17(3), pages 351-375.
  2. Adamson, Joy & Ben-Shlomo, Yoav & Chaturvedi, Nish & Donovan, Jenny, 2003. "Ethnicity, socio-economic position and gender--do they affect reported health--care seeking behaviour?," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 57(5), pages 895-904, September.
  3. Assefa Admassie & Degnet Abebaw & Andinet Woldemichael, 2009. "Impact evaluation of the Ethiopian Health Services Extension Programme," Journal of Development Effectiveness, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 1(4), pages 430-449.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ems:euriss:38648. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (RePub)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.