Document Type : Research articles

Authors

1 Department of Health Services Management and Economics, International Campus, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, IR Iran

2 Center for Health Human Resources Research and Studies, Ministry of Health and Medical Education, Tehran, Iran

3 Iran Ministry of Health and Medical Education, Tehran, IR Iran

4 Department of Health Management and Economics, School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, IR Iran

5 Social Determinants of Health Research Center, Kurdistan University of Medical Sciences, Sanandaj, Iran

6 Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

7 Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

8 Telfer school of Management, University of Ottawa

9 Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, IR Iran

Abstract

Background: Cancer is the third cause of death in Iran. Oncologists play a key role in declining the mortality rate of cancer.
Objectives: This study aims to accurately estimate oncologists’ active supply by using 3 sources of capture-recapture (CRC) in Iran.
Methods: This was a cross-sectional study in 2015 targeting all oncologists in Iran registered in 3 independent sources, a hospitals national survey (213), database of Iran ministry of health and medical education (180), and the database of continuing medical education (173) were used to identify number of oncologists that were active. Duplicate records between the 3 sources were identified and removed using the Microsoft Office Access software. Medical council codes, names, surnames, as well as national ID codes were used for data linkage between the 3 sources.
Results: After removing the duplicate records, a total of 314 oncologists were identified. Based on the selected model, it was estimated that the total number of oncologists were 533 in 2015. They included 325 adult hematologist-oncologists, followed by 88 pediatric oncologists, 47 surgical oncologists, 20 gynecologic oncologists, and 18 urologic oncologists. The estimated ratios for oncologist to population and oncologist to patients suffering from cancer were 0.67 and 1.34 per 100,000, respectively. Completeness of data for all 3 data sources after removing duplicates was 59.13%.
Conclusions: This study highlighted the shortage of oncologists in Iran and showed that the quality of Iran specialists’ registration databases needs improvement.

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