Table 6

Suggested priority areas for study and interventions to improve migrant health and deliver

1. Migrant worker indebtedness and job security
  • Improving regulatory framework and transparency in the sending countries vis-√†-vis the application process and related fees for prospective migrant workers seeking jobs

  • Receiving countries, in collaboration with sending countries, may consider direct-hiring, or hiring via more regulated process(es)

  • Improve protective framework for the job security of migrant workers, including protection from arbitrary repatriation/dismissal, lack of income while awaiting case settlement/after loss of work permit and improved avenues for redress

2. Migrant worker healthcare coverage
  • Improve migrant worker knowledge about healthcare coverage. Specifically they should be provided information, in their native language, re: specifics of company-bought medical insurance coverage

  • Improve clarity in, and enforcement of, what constitutes lawful (and unlawful) salary deductions by employers

  • Expanding regulatory guidance for compulsory insurance coverage to cover outpatient visits and procedures beyond day surgery

  • Insurers may consider expanding insurance coverage for migrant workers, for example, by voluntary purchase of riders which raise coverage ceilings. These are anticipated to be especially helpful in the event of catastrophic illness

  • Migrant workers contribute to the economy of sending and receiving countries. While in many countries, they are not included in the universal healthcare coverage afforded to citizens, policymakers/regulators may consider creating alternate parallel health systems for low-wage migrant workers

3. Migrant worker mental health
  • Specific subgroups of migrant workers may be at risk of mental health issues and other healthcare barriers, and should be the focus of further research and interventions