Efficiency of Public and Nonpublic Primary Health Care Providers in Poland

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Abstract

The main aim of the paper is to reveal the outcomes of a research based on the efficiency of primary health care providers. The scientific goal of the mentioned research was the development of an efficiency measurement model and verification of its usefulness in practice. Overall, the research found that it is possible to use the efficiency measurement model for health care providers. Besides, significant differences were discovered in the efficiency of public and nonpublic primary health care providers. The research was conducted in the West Pomeranian Voivodship in Poland. This paper contributes to the widespread debate on public and nonpublic ownership in the field of healthcare. Also, it has practical implications as the research findings may be useful for any healthcare sector stakeholder, from decision makers to patients. The research was based on the literature overview, which allowed to elaborate the efficiency measurement model. The empirical research (based on a form of questionnaires) allowed testing the proposed model. The described efforts allowed drawing conclusions on the efficiency of primary health care institutions in the West Pomeranian Voivodship. The following methods of data analysis are presented in the paper: synthetic measure of development (SMD), Ward’s method, and k-means method. According to the main conclusion of the research, it is possible to measure the efficiency of public and nonpublic health care providers of the Polish healthcare system. The proposed model for measuring the socioeconomic efficiency may be used as one of the tools used to measure the efficiency in the primary care. The verification of the usefulness of the model showed that nonpublic health care providers operating in the field of the public sector, outperformed public providers. The paper contributes to the theoretical field as it reveals a comprehensive approach to the efficiency measurement in the health care sector. The efficiency measurement model is based on the three major pillars of the healthcare sector, namely, income/resources, cost, and the social aspect. The elaborated efficiency measurement model for the healthcare sector was implemented and tested on a group of primary health care providers in the West Pomeranian Voivodship. The research allowed for positive conclusions regarding its usefulness in practice.

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