Geographia Polonica (2012) vol. 85, iss. 3

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Daily mobility of disabled people for healthcare facilities and their accessibility in urban space

Zbigniew Taylor, Iwona Józefowicz

Geographia Polonica (2012) vol. 85, iss. 3, pp. 5-22
doi: https://doi.org/10.7163/GPol.2012.3.15

Abstract

This paper presents findings from an empirical study of diurnal trips made by disabled people to healthcare facilities distributedacross urban space. The study was carried out in the city of Bydgoszcz, Poland, while the subsequent analysis isbased on the authors’ inventory of healthcare facilities and interviews. Data gathered from interviews with 450 disabledpeople plus 150 able-bodied members of the same households bring out great differences in daily mobility between thetwo social categories. The daily mobility of disabled people in relation to healthcare is much more tangible than thatinvolving their non-disabled counterparts. Disabled people opt to commute further and for a longer time to the establishmentsproviding comprehensive medical services of high quality, even if the architectural availability of some of thesefacilities is unsatisfactory. In contrast, their able-bodied counterparts mostly choose general practitioners situated nearto their home areas, rather than travelling to more-distant specialists.

Keywords: disability, healthcare travel, availability, accessibility, urban space, principal component analysis, Bydgoszcz, Poland

Zbigniew Taylor [z.taylor@twarda.pan.pl], Institute of Geography and Spatial Organization Polish Academy of Sciences, 00-818 Warsaw, Twarda 51/55, Poland