DISTRIBUTION OF SELECTED HEALTH FACILITIES & RESOURCES IN SAUDI ARABIA A GRAPHICAL AND CARTOGRAPHICAL PRESENTATION
Dr. Abdelhalim E. El- Farouk*, Dr. Abdoul Jelil Niang, Fadhel M. Banjar, Hosham M. O. Karar and Fowzi O. Elamin
Aim : Graphing and mapping of some of the healthcare facilities in Saudi Arabia are the prime aims of this paper. Displaying the progress of growth of these resources is important in visualizing how these resources progressed over a period of more than twenty years. One of the two previous published papers by the authors of this paper accomplished the task of discussing determinants of healthcare expenditures in the kingdom (El-Farouk, A. E., et. al., EJPMR, 2016). The second paper studied and discussed the equality of the distribution of these facilities and resources using Lorenz curve and Gini Coefficient (El-Farouk, A. E., et. al. EJEC, 2016) Therefore, this paper is trying to portray in a visualized manner how these facilities are distributed over the plain of the thirteen administrative areas of the Kingdom and nationwide. Material and Methods: Many people consider visualization as one of the best ways to get your message across and to quickly draw attention to the key messages. By presenting data visually it's also possible to uncover surprising patterns and observations that wouldn't be seen from looking at numbers alone. Today, there's plenty of free graphic design software to help us do just that; either graphically or cartographically. Such software includes google developers, visualize, Easel.ly, infogr.am, and the most famous ArcGIS. By visualizing information, we turn it into a landscape that you can explore with your eyes, a sort of information map. And when you're lost in information, an information map is kind of useful. There are various types of statistical maps used by geographers and other scholars. These include choropleth (color shaded) maps, proportional symbol maps, and dots maps. The first type is suitable for showing standardized data such as rates, densities or percentages. A different color is used for each of a number of bands, allowing users to identify which areas have high, low or middling values. The second type, dot maps, suits where individual events or groups of events are marked with a dot, allowing users to geographic patterns such as clusters. The third type, which is used in this paper, is the proportional symbol map that uses symbols that are proportional in size to the values they represent, such that the biggest symbol will fall in the area with the highest value. Symbols can include histograms, circles, bars, or objects indicating what is being measured. Sources of Variable Data under the Study: A data matrix of the thirteen administrative areas by the four health resources mentioned below was constructed based on the available government data of the Central Department of Statistics and Information (CDSI). The type of health resources under the study (health center, hospital, hospital beds, and physicians). This data matrix is for 22 years starting from 1992 to 2013 for the health resources (Statistical Year Books) with the exception of the data for physicians. It's available for up to 2007, after which it has been produced at the level of the Kingdom. In order to obtain the relative share of an area of each health resource, the total number of, for example, health centers, is divided by the corresponding total population of the area and multiplied by k, which equals 100,000 (for health centers and hospitals), 1000 (for hospital beds) and 10,000 (for physicians). Looking at the absolute numbers, alone, of each area variable regardless of its corresponding population will lead to a faulty conclusion. Total populations, of administrative areas, were projected using the declared growth rates (by the CDSI) between censuses. Human population calculator was used to running the projection at this website (http://www.metamorphosisalpha.com/ias/population.php). Thus, relative shares are used instead of numbers because they provide a more realistic picture.
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