This Insights report examines individual-level factors that predict the use of public health services in 23 Latin American and Caribbean countries, which were surveyed via the 2014 AmericasBarometer. Across the region, there is significant variation in the percentage of citizens who access public health services. I find that women, those with a greater number of children, those living in rural areas, those who receive government assistance, and those who are poorer are more likely to use public health services. In addition, those who engage in their societies in other ways (e.g., voting) are more likely to access health services. Further, satisfaction with public health services is significantly related to public health care access: those who are more satisfied with its quality are more likely to access a public health service. These findings highlight important factors that governments might take into account when considering improvements to public health care access.

Keep up-to-date with drug policy developments by subscribing to the IDPC Monthly Alert.