Migration of women from the Philippines: Implications for healthcare delivery

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Journal Article
Collegian, 2012, 19 (1), pp. 59 - 63
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Filipinos have been an important part of the global workforce since the first half of the twentieth century. The initial migration of primarily men has shifted to an increasing numbers of women in recent decades. These changes are primarily attributed to a high demand for domestic workers, nurses and occupations that are female dominated. In 2005, about 70% of the international labour migrants are women from the Philippines. Living in a foreign land, these women face challenges that affect their physical, emotional and social well being. Especially on their first year living abroad, these women experience significant stress which affects their health as they adjust to a new work environment, culture, social norms, diet, and weather. The emotional strain can be greater for those who have left their families behind in the Philippines and aggravated by the financial need to send money to them. Striking examples, such as the homicide rate of Filipino women married to Australian men being 5.6 times higher than that of Australian-born women, underscores the importance of supportive health care environments and appreciating socio-cultural factors. In the delivery of healthcare services to migrant women, it is critical to consider the unique socio-cultural background of women as well as health beliefs and practices. © 2011 Royal College of Nursing, Australia.
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