This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Evaluating Access Barriers To Primary Health Care Services For Hispanic Residents in Toombs County, Georgia




Vitale, Michele

Type of Degree



Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology


Latinos are no longer concentrated in “traditional” cities and states, like Los Angeles, Florida, and Texas, and the rural Latino population is rapidly increasing in number throughout many regions of the nation, mostly in the Southern and Midwestern states. However, as Hispanics relocate to the rural South, they progressively challenge local communities and institutions that had not planned to deal with a large number of Latino newcomers. One area of particular concern is the adequate provision of primary health care. Personal interviews with Hispanic residents and local medical professionals, 2000 census data, and location data entered into a Geographic Information System (GIS) are the sources of information and the methodological tools utilized by the present study, in order to evaluate the major barriers that Latinos face to access primary care in Toombs County, Georgia, and comprehend how the local health care system could respond to successfully meet the extra and unique Hispanic health needs.