The 2020 Paved Road Accessibility Degree report indicates that in those places the nearest hospital is more than a 4-hour drive away.
In Mexico, at least 6.2 million people live in communities practically isolated from the rest of the country: while four out of ten localities do not have access –or almost zero access– to a paved road, in six out of ten small towns there is no public transport to the municipal capitals, the National Council for the Evaluation of Social Development Policy (Coneval) determined today.
According to the report on the Degree of Accessibility to Paved Road 2020, millions of people continue to suffer from the isolation of “service centers”, mainly in situations in which the nearest hospital is more than 4 hours away by car, during which the passage through dirt roads must be gained.
The Coneval pointed out the correlation between the degree of poverty of the municipalities and the isolation of the communities around them: nine out of ten municipalities that have more than 60% degree of accessibility to low or very low paved roads have in parallel poverty rates above 70%, and with high degrees of lack of access to social security.
“When the population lives in localities with difficult access to health, education or employment services, among others, it leads to the exercise of their social rights not being fulfilled due to the little or no existence of infrastructure or communication routes that facilitate transfers to these sites. For this reason, as opportunities, goods and services are located in remote communities, people run the risk of further isolation and, at the same time, hindering their living conditions and possibly placing them in poverty,” he said.
The autonomous body also highlighted that more than half of the 31,165 localities belonging to indigenous municipalities have low or very low access to paved roads, and highlighted the cases of the Chiapas municipalities of Ocosingo, Chilón and Las Margaritas, as well as that of Mulegé, in Baja California Sur, which report the largest population “in localities with a low or very low degree of accessibility to paved roads.”
According to the Coneval, of the 189,432 localities registered in the country, 11,582 have “very low” access to a paved road, either because of poverty or because of the size of the states, because in entities such as Chihuahua, Sonora, Durango and Coahuila — the largest surface area in the country — between 36.6% and 62.8% of the localities have access to low or very low paved roads.
In Chihuahua and Durango, for example, the towns of San Francisco de Lajas, San Juan Nepomuceno and Arroyo Amplio are more than 100 kilometers from the nearest paved highway, while in more than half of the country’s localities, the nearest highway is more than a kilometer away.
Also in Chihuahua and Durango – but also in Baja California Sur, Nayarit and Jalisco – the largest number of locations located more than 4 hours from a service center was concentrated.