Using the Gravity Model for Health Transportation Planning

While considering the long distances required for rural senior residents in reaching a healthcare facility, transportation liabilities for rural older adults are particularly concerning. The province of New Brunswick has always had an increased pressure to control health costs, which has typically involved the consolidation of rural health facilities to urban ones and terminating many of the small rural health amenities (McGeorge and Bateman, 2017). These actions have led to the increase in travel distances to healthcare facilities, accompanied by much public resistance. Volunteer Driver Programs (VPD’s) are assisting older adults in reaching a healthcare facility, but there is uncertainty on whether these programs can be a sustainable long-term solution for healthcare access. Additionally, significant challenges to recruit and retain staff members in smaller rural facilities have led to temporary closures (McGeorge and Bateman, 2017), which assists in the increase of travel distances. These actions and occurrences in New Brunswick create challenges accessing healthcare facilities and is seen as an overwhelming issue in various older aged rural communities. This paper summarizes recent efforts to quantify the accessibility of older adults seeking healthcare facilities in New Brunswick using administrative data from the New Brunswick Institute of Research, Data, and Training (NB-IRDT). The paper presents an application of the gravity model to determine whether the impacts of changing the status of a health facility (e.g. closure) could be quantified in terms of travel distances by older adults.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 11p
  • Monograph Title: Canadian Transportation Research Forum 57th Annual Conference

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01890990
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Transportation Association of Canada (TAC)
  • Files: ITRD, TAC
  • Created Date: Aug 25 2023 9:18AM