Document Type : Research Paper
Assistant Professor, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, Farhangian University, Tehran
Graduate of Geography and Urban Planning, Zabol University, Farhangian University trainee
Assessment and evaluation of urban health indicators (case study: Zabol)
The rapid increase of urbanization without accompanying the growth and development of economic, social and biological indicators, has faced cities with many problems and issues. Therefore, the topic of "urban health" has been raised by urban planners with the aim of equitable access of all residents to the determinants of urban health, including physical, mental and social health. One of the oldest and most important cities in eastern Iran, which despite various actions of governments and municipalities in different periods and after the Islamic Revolution, still seems to suffer from various deficiencies in urban health indicators and no independent research has been done on it, is Zabol. Undoubtedly, paying attention to urban health indicators in this part of the country, due to its distance from the center and neighborhood with Afghanistan and the special economic, cultural and social situation prevailing, can improve the living conditions for citizens has increased the resilience of citizens and led to greater participation of people in various urban and national planning and activities.
The method of the present research is descriptive-analytical and applied in terms of purpose. Library resources as well as interviews and surveys with questionnaire tools in the sample community have been used to collect findings. Sampling method was simple random sampling. The study area of three urban areas of Zabol was purposefully selected from three contexts (old, middle and new) (districts two, three and five). The sample size according to Cochran's formula and the total population of the area was 380 people, which was estimated to be 124 people in district 2, 178 people in district 3 and 78 people in district 5 in relation to the population of each area. Then, the research data were analyzed and the final comparison and evaluation of the status of the studied areas with the facilities of a healthy city was performed.
Results and discussion
The set of indicators of healthy cities according to the standard of the World Health Organization in five main groups of economic indicators, social indicators, environmental indicators, cultural indicators and health indicators was the basis of this research. The findings were as follows:
In measuring economic indicators, three sub-criteria of employment, income and class distance have been used. The employment rate at the national level is %88.18. This ratio is %73 in district two, %49 in district 3 and %23 in district 5, respectively, compared to the study areas in Zabol. The results of other cases are shown in the table below:
In measuring social indicators, three sub-criteria of crime rate, social participation and sports environment have been used.
In the study of the following environmental indicators, the findings showed that the residents of all three studied areas suffer from environmental pollution (including: noise pollution, health and air pollution, water pollution, etc.).
According to the results of research and studies conducted on the sub-indicators selected to evaluate the cultural index, it can be said that the existing per capita of cultural centers (library, mosque, cultural and artistic center, etc.) in all three areas is lower than the desired per capita.
The findings indicate that despite the attention paid to the city of Zabol in recent years, the indicators of insurance, health services, physical activity and health centers are still relatively far from the desired situation.
After evaluating and comparing the current situation of each area with the standard situation, to review and determine the extent to which each urban area is studied, urban welfare indicators of network analysis model and its special software Super Decisions have been used. The results of the analysis indicate that zone two with a normal score of 0.528 is in the first rank and at the level of enjoyment, zone three with a normal score of 0.258 is in the second rank and at the level of enjoyment and zone five with a normal score of 0.313 is ranked Third, it is at a low level or deprived of urban welfare indicators.
The results of the research indicate that despite the attention paid to urban development and health in Zabol in recent years, the current situation in different areas of the city is still far from the desired and standard situation in terms of having healthy city indicators. Also, the analysis of the results obtained from the level of enjoyment of the studied areas, showed that in the city of Zabol, region two with a normal score of 0.528 is at the level of enjoyment and in fact is higher than the other two areas of study. In the next degrees, zone three with a normal score of 0.258 is at the semi-level and zone five with a normal score of 0.213 is at the sub-level or deprived.
Figure 1. Spatial distribution of healthy city characteristics (research findings, 2021)
In order for these areas to flourish better and achieve the desired goals of a healthy city in Zabol, it is suggested that authorities take a serious and fundamental step in promoting these indicators by principled planning, such as:
- Considering that cultural indicators are always the basis for solving many problems and cultural indicators in different areas of Zabol do not have a suitable standard, it is necessary for city officials to pay more attention to this aspect of urban health.
- Paying attention to health and treatment per capita in different areas of Zabol can play an important role in promoting urban health indicators.
- Due to the weak financial capacity of residents in different areas of the city, responsible organizations must reduce the cost of various services to improve urban health indicators, especially cultural and health indicators.
Keywords: assessment, healthy city, urban health, network analysis, Zabol.