Part of universal health care is diagnostic imaging such as CT scan and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). The availability of such equipment in developing countries varies from region to region. Patients who live in bigger cities where the economies are growing can usually avail of diagnostic imaging because of richer patients. A lot of people have insurance and private individuals have invested on the equipment.
On the other hand, cities of smaller size usually don’t have such equipment. Although, if the economy of such city is growing rapidly, the patients could afford so they have to go to the nearest city to have their diagnostic images taken. This is because private entities do not invest in such equipment and the medical practitioners in these cities do not refer.
Some solutions to this problem are to expand health insurance to cover individuals with lower income, purchasing used equipment, encouraging the private investors & doctors, or the government should invest in health care.
Accessibility of diagnostic imaging relies on being available and affordable. In developing countries like Brazil & Taiwan, patients can afford it because health insurance programs of their governments cover most of them. In India, however, the government insurance covers only some people. Only the affluent can afford such equipment.
The government needs to shell out a large capital for state-of-the-art diagnostic imaging equipment that’s why they couldn’t provide access to most of the people. And private sectors only invest on cities where the economies are fast growing. Doctors don’t prescribe imaging scans very often. And doctors who do prescribe them are residing in bigger cities.
Patients residing in larger cities are more aware and can afford health care insurance, thus, health care services are being provided. Hospitals & other diagnostic imaging centers have invested in these diagnostic equipments. Even hospitals run by the government have invested on such equipment. With greater competition, the pricing for diagnostic scans have lowered making these services more affordable & accessible.
When the competition increases and the bigger cities become saturated, the companies for diagnostic imaging equipment are setting their sights on the cities next in size. They are encouraging hospitals & diagnostic centers of these cities to invest in these equipment. Now the patients from these cities don’t have to travel to the big city to avail of high-end imaging scans.