Faculty of Public Health - Andalas University - OCS, 13th IEA SEA Meeting and ICPH - SDev

Font Size: 
ACCESS TO HEALTHCARE AMONG FILIPINO MIGRANT WORKERS IN MALAYSIA: A CASE STUDY
ERWIN MARTINEZ FALLER

Last modified: 2018-08-15

Abstract


Background

This examines the accessibility to health care among Filipino migrant workers in Malaysia. This specifically investigates the common illnesses experienced by Filipino migrant workers, the health care benefits that the employers provide, and the government’s health care support from both countries: the country of origin and the host country.

 

Methods

To carry out the study, 40 Filipino migrant workers which include 10 domestic helpers, 10 sex workers, 10 IT professionals and 10 educators were interviewed and asked to narrate their personal experiences on health care accessibility.

 

Results

The preliminary findings of the study reveal that the accessibility to health care varies depending on the migrant workers’ job and employment status. It shows that most domestic helpers do not have insurance and their hospitalization is always at the mercy of their employers. If the employers could not provide any support, then they could not have an access to health care. On the other hand, sex workers do not have any medical insurance at all and their accessibility to health care is very limited. However, the IT professionals and educators are provided by their companies with insurance so they do not find the accessibility to health care as a major issue but there are some limitations. Based on the interviews, it is also evident that the country of origin has the support but not applicable when the worker is already overseas. Only the family members who are left in the Philippines could access the health care provided by Philhealth. On the other hand, the host country passes on the responsibility to the employers and there is no strict policy implementation that fully requires the employers to provide the migrant workers with the health care.

 

Conclusion

The study provides helpful findings in improving the health care accessibility of Filipino migrant workers in Malaysia.

 

Keywords: Health care, Filipino, migrant workers, Malaysia, Overseas Filipino Workers (OWA)