3 years ago

Power structure among the actors of financial support to the poor to access health services: Social network analysis approach

The extent of universal health coverage in terms of financial protection is worrisome in Iran. There are challenges in health policies to guarantee financial accessibility to health services, especially for poor people. Various institutions offer support to ensure that the poor have financial access to health services. The aim of this study is to investigate the relationship network among the institutions active in this field. This study is a policy document analysis. It evaluates the country's legal documents in the field of financial support to the poor for healthcare after the Islamic Revolution in Iran. The researchers looked for the documents on the related websites and referred to the related organizations. The social network analysis approach was chosen for the analysis of the documents. Block-modelling and multi-dimensional scaling (MDS) was used to determine the network structures. The UCINET software was employed to analyse the data. Most the main actors of this network are chosen from the government budget. There is no legal communication and cooperation among some of the actors because of their improper position in the network. Seven blocks have been clustered by CONCOR in terms of the actor's degree of similarity. The social distance among the actors of the seven blocks is very short. Power distribution in the field of financial support to the poor has a fragmented structure; however, it is mainly run by a dominant block consisting of The Supreme Council of Welfare and Social Security, Health Insurance Organization, and the Ministry of Health and Medical Education. The financial support for the poor network involves multiple actors. This variety has created a series of confusions in terms of the type, level, and scope of responsibilities among the actors. The weak presence legislative and regulatory institutions and also non-governmental institutions are the main weak points of this network.

Publisher URL: www.sciencedirect.com/science

DOI: S0277953617306445

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