Impact of Poverty on Access to Healthcare Facilities and Services in Nigeria: A Study of Nasarawa State

Francis A. Akawu, Agum Charles


Poverty, hunger, disease and unemployment have become a scourge and are widespread and their occurrence have increasing devastation on the economy and the quality of life of the people. The scourge of poverty is not restricted to only accessibility to the minimum income earned by an individual, but it includes poor per calorie intake, nutritional diet, food, the level of accessibility to clean water. The broad objective of this study was to empirically investigate the relationship between poverty and healthcare in Nasarawa State using Instrumental Variable approach and the study adopted the Grossman Model. The area covered are three senatorial zones namely: Nasarawa North, Nasarawa South, Nasarawa West. In Nasarawa North, General Hospital Akwanga. In Nasarawa South, Dalhatu Araft Specialist Hospital Lafia. In Nasarawa West, Federal Medical Centre Keffi. Questionnaire was the instrument used in data collection. Using a Smith (1984) sample formular, a sample size of 298 was arrived at from a population of 3508; and these sample made up the number of questionnaires that were distributed. The study developed an instrumental model, and the estimation techniques used was the STATA statistical software. The results revealed that, the per capita income has a negative and insignificant impact on peoples’ access to health care facilities in Nasarawa state. In addition, it was discovered from the results that, the per calorie intake (such as protein, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, etc) had a poor impact on under 5 mortality rates in Nasarawa State; and these were due to lack of awareness and ignorance, food insecurity, poor intra family food distribution, poor access to good quality health and sanitation services. Finally, the result showed that, the literacy level was discovered to have an insignificant effect on maternal mortality rate in Nasarawa state. The study therefore recommends that amount charged on health services provided to rural communities, especially in Nasarawa state should be provided in a subsidized form to enable those with low income to have access to available health care services.

Keywords: Poverty, healthcare, Per capita Income, Maternal mortality

JEL Classification: P36, 111,112

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