Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic Crisis on the Health Care System in Less Developed Regions of Poland
Purpose: The aim of the study was to develop a model for assessing the satisfaction of patients of GP practice with access to health services in the Lubelskie Voivodeship, in terms of eliminating inequalities in the quality of these services and developing a scenario for the revitalization of the health care system in relation to the inhabitants of the underdeveloped region in the period after the cessation of pandemic. Design/Methodology/Approach: The research method included developing a research tool in the form of a survey questionnaire, validating the tool, conducting Phase I and II of the survey, and evaluating the performance of the outpatient specialty care subsystem. The analysis of the research results was directed at developing the assumptions of a model for restoring functionality and increasing resilience of the healthcare system. Findings: It was found that the level of patient satisfaction with the functioning of the health care system during a pandemic, both in the form of medical tele-consultation and in the form of direct contact with personnel in a health care facility, depends on the age and the level of education. There were no differences in terms of sex and place of residence (town, village). It was also found that the very limited availability of advanced diagnostic methods, showing an unfavorable trend in the period preceding the outbreak of the pandemic, deteriorated further and poses a critical threat to the functioning of the health care system for patients with chronic diseases (oncological, neurodegenerative etc.). Practical Implications: The results of the research will be used to construct a model for the reconstruction and revitalization of the health care system in the Lubelskie Voivodeship after the pandemic. Originality/Value: The study presents results of the current research. The development of the research results will be continued in order to construct a comprehensive model.