Migrants from Myanmar in Thailand are studied as homogenous group of population in research and policies. In reality, Myanmar is one of the ethnically diverse country in ASEAN with 135 ethnic groups as recognized by the government (Department of Population, 2014). There is a need to examine ethnic significance of the health service user and provider side as well as health system. This is a mixed-method study with secondary data using PHAMIT2 Project and followed by qualitative in-depth interview with 28 migrants from Myanmar and 19 health service providers in Samut Sakhon area.
The purpose of this seminar is to present what the researcher found in this study and to get input for further analysis. Our findings indicate that the ethnicity and health seeking behavior are highly significantly associated. In the qualitative interviews, if the migrants have minor ailment, they chose to go nearby clinics are chosen over the government hospitals because of the opening hours and can save time without need for long wait. Taking traditional medicine is prominent among Bamar ethnic migrants and praying, healing and spiritual worship is found more in Mon and Karen ethnic migrants from Myanmar.
Regarding accessibility to health services, for geographical accessibility, many clinics and drug stores present near migrants’ housings in walking distance. Public and private hospitals are not very close to migrants’ communities but they have to go there because of the health insurance allotment. For availability of health services, many clinics are present around migrant community. Translator availability is the most problematic especially in public hospital and limited number can speak ethnic languages. Regarding acceptability, ethnicity is associated with the satisfaction and convenient access for private health services in Phamit2data. There is the double layer of language difficulty among the different ethnic groups of Myanmar. Mon ethnic migrants preferred to choose same ethnic service providers. For affordability, migrants can afford the transportation cost and usual cost is 40-80 Baht by motorcycle, bus or combined. For treatment cost, only 30 Baht with health insurance scheme for the public or private hospital. If in clinics, increased cost 10 times than public hospital, although the language barrier is overcome. Medical certificate from doctors is very important for migrants to reimburse daily wage.
Keywords: Migrants from Myanmar, Ethnicity, Health seeking behavior, Accessibility to health services
Moderator: Mr.Nyein Chan
September 4, 2019 at 12.30-13.30 hours at Sra-bua room (109)