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Ghana Medical Journal

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What could be influencing older Ghanaians outpatient care utilization rate?

Candidus C. Nwakasi, J. Scott Brown, Phillip Anyanwu

Abstract


Objectives: Ghana’s population is rapidly aging and there may be healthcare access and utilization issues. This study investigates some of the issues that may influence outpatient care utilization rate among older Ghanaians.

Methods: Cross-sectional wave 1 (2007-2010) data from WHO's Study on Global Ageing and Adult Health are used, and a sample of 1408 are analyzed. After multiple imputations of missing values, a negative binomial regression model is used to identify the association between outpatient care utilization rate and lifestyle activities.

Results: The rate of outpatient care utilization is negatively associated with the rate of eating vegetables (β =0.0830, p < .001), fruits (β =0.0033, p < .05), moderate-exercise (β =0.4010, p < .001), moderate-work (β =0.2049, p < .001), walking/biking (β = 0.0436, p < .001), and positively associated with leisure hours ((β =0.0194, p < .001).

Conclusion: To promote better aging situations of older adults in Ghana, poverty and poor education should be addressed as potential barriers to healthcare access. There is a need for policies that encourage healthier lifestyles for older Ghanaian’s health.

Keywords: Africa, aging, lifestyle, healthcare, quality of life

Funding: The study was self-funded by the authors




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