Table 3

Barriers to healthcare and self-reported perception of payment of inpatient expenses among non-domestic migrant workers, HealthServe clinics and foreign worker dormitory, 23 July–28 August 2016*

Characteristic (number of respondents, n)Bangladeshi (N=281)Indian (N=84)Chinese (N=51)All (N=419)Bangladeshi vs non-Bangladeshi (reference category)†
p ValueOR (95% CI)
Did not seek medical care because of cost (n=432)
 Yes57 (20)9 (11)14 (27)81 (19)0.581.2 (0.69 to 2.0)
 No235 (81)75 (88)38 (73)350 (81)
 Unsure‡0 (0)1 (1)0 (0)1 (0.2)
Did not get prescription medications because of cost (n=432)
 Yes34 (12)3 (4)10 (19)47 (11)0.471.3 (0.65 to 2.5)
 No257 (88)82 (97)41 (79)383 (89)
 Unsure‡1 (0.3)0 (0)1 (2)2 (0.5)
Did not get specialist care or referral to tertiary hospital because of cost (n=432)
 Yes40 (14)5 (6)10 (19)56 (13)0.501.2 (0.67 to 2.3)
 No249 (85)80 (94)41 (79)372 (86)
 Unsure‡3 (1)0 (0)1 (2)4 (0.9)
Insurance policy/information provided (n=429)
 Yes34 (12)23 (27)8 (16)65 (15)0.0090.49 (0.29 to 0.84)
 No215 (74)55 (65)38 (79)311 (73)
 Unsure‡41 (14)7 (8)5 (10)53 (12)
Insurance information in native language§ (n=65)
 Yes7 (20)12 (52)2 (25)21 (32)0.0340.32 (0.11 to 0.94)
 No27 (79)11 (48)6 (75)44 (68)
Who pays for work-related injury hospitalisations¶ (n=429)
 Self only16 (6)2 (2)10 (20)29 (7)0.160.58 (0.27 to 1.2)
 Insurance has role125 (43)29 (34)18 (35)173 (40)0.101.4 (0.93 to 2.2)
 Unsure‡15 (5)2 (2)2 (4)19 (4)
Who pays for non-work injury-related hospitalisations¶ (n=428)
 Self only82 (28)19 (22)35 (69)137 (32)0.0180.59 (0.38 to 0.92)
 Insurance has role64 (22)16 (19)4 (8)85 (20)0.081.6 (0.94 to 2.8)
 Unsure‡30 (10)6 (7)8 (16)44 (10)
Employer recognises MC from company doctor (n=256)**
 Yes163 (90)53 (96)12 (63)229 (90)1.0††0.71 (0.14 to 3.5)
 No7 (4)1 (2)1 (5)9 (4)
 Unsure‡11 (6)1 (2)6 (32)18(7)
Employer recognises MC from private general practitioner (n=427)
 Yes209 (73)67 (79)29 (57)307 (72)0.730.91 (0.53 to 1.6)
 No54 (19)12 (14)11 (22)77 (18)
 Unsure‡25 (9)6 (7)11 (22)43 (10)
Employer recognises MC from HealthServe clinic (n=427)
 Yes194 (67)59 (69)27 (53)282 (66)0.490.82 (0.46 to 1.5)
 No54 (19)9 (11)11 (22)74 (17)
 Unsure‡40 (14)17 (20)13 (26)71 (17)
Employer recognises MC from government polyclinic/hospital (n=427)
 Yes236 (82)71 (84)31 (61)340 (80)0.571.2 (0.62 to 2.4)
 No28 (10)8 (9)7 (14)43 (10)
 Unsure‡24 (8)6 (7)13 (26)44 (10)
Only MCs from company doctors are accepted (n=255)**
 Yes24 (13)7 (13)1 (5)32 (13)0.671.2 (0.51 to 2.8)
 No137 (76)45 (82)10 (53)192 (75)
 Unsure‡19 (11)3 (6)8 (42)31 (12)
Daily wages held if on sick/outpatient MC (n=426)
 Yes68 (24)17 (20)28 (55)113 (27)0.0250.60 (0.38 to 0.94)
 No208 (73)62 (73)18 (35)290 (68)
 Unsure‡11 (4)6 (7)5 (10)23 (5)
Daily wages held if on hospitalisation MC (n=426)
 Yes69 (24)11 (13)26 (51)106 (25)0.370.81 (0.50 to 1.3)
 No192 (67)64 (75)18 (35)275 (65)
 Unsure‡26 (9)10 (12)7 (14)45 (11)
Had pay deducted even with sick/outpatient MC (n=426)
 Yes22 (8)4 (5)6 (12)32 (8)0.921.0 (0.48 to 2.3)
 No258 (90)78 (92)42 (82)380 (89)
 Unsure‡7 (2)3 (4)3 (6)14 (3)
Had pay deducted even with hospitalisation MC (n=425)
 Yes12 (4)1 (1)6 (12)19 (5)0.670.81 (0.31 to 2.1)
 No259 (91)81 (95)40 (78)382 (90)
 Unsure‡15 (5)3 (4)5 (10)24 (6)
Knows someone with pay deducted even with sick/outpatient MC (n=424)
 Yes55 (19)6 (7)10 (20)71 (17)0.0431.9 (1.0 to 3.4)
 No208 (73)75 (88)35 (69)320 (76)
 Unsure‡22 (8)4 (5)6 (12)33 (8)
Knows someone with pay deducted even with hospitalisation MC (n=423)
 Yes38 (13)4 (5)8 (16)50 (12)0.141.7 (0.84 to 3.3)
 No218 (77)77 (91)36 (71)333 (79)
 Unsure‡28 (10)4 (5)7 (14)40 (10)
Afraid of losing job or being sent home if fall sick (n=422)
 Yes76 (27)9 (11)12 (24)97 (23)0.0102.0 (1.8 to 3.4)
 No202 (71)72 (86)38 (75)315 (74)
 Unsure‡6 (2)3 (4)1 (2)10 (2)
  • *p Values by Pearson χ2 test except otherwise indicated. Reference population used for p values and OR are non-Bangladeshis. This section consists of questions to which answers were ‘Yes’, ‘No’ and ‘Unsure’ except when stated otherwise. ‘Unsure’ responses were not included in the statistical analysis. MC, medical certificate.

  • †Non-Bangladeshi group include Indians (n=85), Chinese (n=52), Malaysian (n=1), Burmese (n=1) and Vietnamese (n=1).

  • ‡‘Unsure’ responses were not included in the χ2 test.

  • §Three hundred and sixty-five who answered ‘No’ and ‘Unsure’ to having been provided a copy of their health insurance policy were excluded.

  • ¶Respondents were given scenarios and asked for who (among company, insurance and self) they thought was responsible for payment of medical bills, multiple selections were allowed.

  • **One hundred and seventy-one respondents who have no company doctor were excluded.

  • ††p Values by Fisher's exact test.