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Enabling universal and equitable access to healthcare for vulnerable people in poor resource settings (EquitAble)
Start date: Mar 1, 2009, End date: Feb 28, 2013 PROJECT  FINISHED 

Healthcare can be neither universal nor equitable if it is less accessible to some sections of society than it is to others. EquitAble’s focus on activity limitations brings recent thinking on disability, public health and health policy together to provide data that is crucial to enable universal and equitable access to healthcare in resource poor settings. EquitAble is a four-year collaborative research programme comprised of both leading and upcoming researchers, from two European and four African countries. Each of the African partner countries represent distinct challenges in terms of equitable access to health care in contexts where a large proportion of the population has been displaced (Sudan); where the population is highly dispersed (Namibia); where chronic poverty and high disease burden compete for meagre resources (Malawi); and where, despite relative wealth, universal and equitable access to health care is yet to be attained (South Africa). Documentary analysis of international and country-level health policy will identify health policy aspirations and challenges; along with opportunities for alignment and harmonisation, between different stakeholders. Intensive qualitative interviews and case studies, along with behavioural observations will explore the experiences of healthcare users, non-users and providers, and feed into the development of a household survey instrument. The extensive quantitative household survey will allow us to test models of access to healthcare, taking into account how the relationship between activity limitations and healthcare access is mediated by, or interacts with, cultural, contextual and systems variables. These work packages will constitute a much needed evidence base for health policy and practice in resource poor areas. EquitAble also goes beyond the provision of information and addresses how to ensure that research evidence affects policy and practice; both within the EU and Africa.
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7 Partners Participants