Medical Assistance for Burmese Workers in Phang Nga Province, Southern Thailand 2016 Activity Report

Program background

It is said that democratization and transition to civilian rule have progressed in Burma (Myanmar), considering that the general election was held in November, 2015. However, there are still a few domestic problems such as the battle between the national armed forces and the armed insurgents which had withdrawn from signing the “nationwide ceasefire agreement”. The other problems are the seizure of lands on the back of overheating investments, the environmental issues due to development of mines, and the minority race issue. There are many Burmese immigrant workers in Thailand, with around 130,000 to 150,000 Burmese living in Phang Nga Province that JVC has been assisting. They are in dire straits with limited access to medical services, because they cannot afford to join the insurance system and their employers do not cover the costs of treatment.

In collaboration with the Foundation for Education & Development (FED), a local NGO supporting the Burmese people, JVC provided emergency medical assistance and aided community healthcare activities within Burmese worker communities in Phang Nga Province in Southern Thailand.

1. Emergency Medical Assistance

Children receiving medical examination at an informal school.

JVC provided 86 patients with assistance with negotiations over the reduction of medical charges, issuing of health insurance cards, and medical interpretation services.

2. Supporting the Activities of Community Healthcare

Health education class for community residents.

JVC held 38 classes of health education on topics regarding family planning, mother and child healthcare, and prevention of tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS, and received 731 participants. We also provided information concerning the health insurance system in Thailand.

Additionally, JVC conducted medical examinations and simple treatments, while continuing to provide health education to 400 students every month at the informal school* which was operated by FED and attended by children from kindergarten to the 2nd grade of middle school.

*Informal school

It is a school operated by NGOs or other organizations. It includes a literacy school for adults in a community. It is not authorized as an official school in some cases, but many countries approve the period of enrollment at an informal school as official education, so that a student can be admitted to an official educational institution thereafter.

(source: “JVC Annual Report – 2016 report”)

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