Document Type



Community Health Sciences


In developing countries, health seeking behaviours and health care services utilization patterns have been studied and the determinants have been classified in physical, socio-economic, cultural and political contexts. This paper is based on a systematic review of peer-reviewed literature on the relationship of factors affecting health service utilization and the focus has been on Pakistan. For this purpose, National Health Survey (NHS) of Pakistan, conducted in 1990-1994, has been critically reviewed. The review reveals specific behaviours following gender differences, socio-cultural milieu, disease patterns, household economics etc. Thus it becomes imperative to design evidence based policies by developing the understanding of health behaviours and health care utilization trends and to give enough credence to all determinants in the background. Health sector reforms therefore necessitate developing mechanisms to deliver more need based and quality services, considering thoughtfully users' concerns and perspectives. The advent of decentralization in Pakistan provides a unique opportunity for tackling multi-faceted issues by multisectoral approaches.

Publication (Name of Journal)

Journal of Pakistan Medical Association