Prediction model for determining healthcare facility locations by the Kenyan County Government
Isaboke, Edward Nyakeruma
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Health has been a key subject of interest to governments and non-governmental organizations. Health includes various building blocks with human resource being the core of health systems. Evidence globally shows a correlation between a country’s healthcare work force and health. Infrastructure relating to health is crucial for efficient and effective healthcare systems. A strategic location for a healthcare facility can improve facility utilization and save costs. Knowledge of methods and techniques need to be regularly updated for the location and establishment of healthcare facilities. This research investigates the criteria for decision-making of locations of healthcare facilities to ensure the most strategic location for the facilities is opted for. This research looks at the challenges that affect the location of healthcare facilities in detail to model the most appropriate locations for the facilities. Existing location models developed are many and discussed in detail to cater for special cases. The two most important criteria for healthcare services are cost and efficiency. They enable reduced distance to travel by patients to the health facilities. Unpredictability is identified as an unavoidable element of healthcare facilities location problem. The purpose of this research is to develop a model for determining strategic locations to establish healthcare facilities. The model was developed using the rapid application development methodology. This research proposed a strategy which enabled predictions according to the location factors that are suitable for establishment of healthcare facilities. This is after a set of locations are identified to be the target locations by the set cover location model. The model calculates and identifies the strategic locations within an area entered by a user. It is therefore important for historical data to exist for the model to work. Based on the provided data, the model then calculates the priority of the strategic locations identified hence a sequence is known on which location to establish the facility. Datasets from an online source were used as data inputs into the prediction model. The research recommended the model as a base for decision making for establishment of a healthcare facilities.