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Factors influencing the provision of public health services by village doctors in Hubei and Jiangxi provinces, China

Ding, Yan, Smith, Helen ORCID:, Fei, Yang, Xu, Biao, Nie, Shaofa, Yan, Weirong, Diwan, Vinod K, Sauerborn, Rainer and Dong, Hengjin (2012) 'Factors influencing the provision of public health services by village doctors in Hubei and Jiangxi provinces, China'. Bulletin of the World Health Organization, Vol 91, Issue 1, pp. 64-69.

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The Chinese central government launched the Health System Reform Plan in 2009 to strengthen disease control and health promotion and provide a package of basic public health services. Village doctors receive a modest subsidy for providing public health services associated with the package. Their beliefs about this subsidy and providing public health services could influence the quality and effectiveness of preventive health services and disease surveillance.

To understand village doctors’ perspectives on the subsidy and their experiences of delivering public health services, we performed 10 focus group discussions with village doctors, 12 in-depth interviews with directors of township health centres and 4 in-depth interviews with directors of county-level Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Local setting The study was conducted in four counties in central China, two in Hubei province and two in Jiangxi province.

Relevant changes
Village doctors prioritize medical services but they do their best to manage their time to include public health services. The willingness of township health centre directors and village doctors to provide public health services has improved since the introduction of the package and a minimum subsidy, but village doctors do not find the subsidy to be sufficient remuneration for their efforts.

Lessons learnt
Improving the delivery of public health services by village doctors is likely to require an increase in the subsidy, improvement in the supervisory relationship between village clinics and township health centres and the creation of a government pension for village doctors.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: WA Public Health > WA 30 Socioeconomic factors in public health (General)
WA Public Health > Health Problems of Special Population Groups > WA 395 Health in developing countries
WA Public Health > Statistics. Surveys > WA 900 Public health statistics
WX Hospitals and Other Health Facilities > Clinical Departments and Units > WX 205 Hospital outpatient clinics. Ambulatory care facilities
Faculty: Department: Clinical Sciences & International Health > Clinical Sciences Department
Digital Object Identifer (DOI):
Depositing User: Katharyn Robinson
Date Deposited: 04 Dec 2013 13:07
Last Modified: 04 Dec 2020 15:24


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