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Home > Main Library > Health > Threats to Health > Diseases > Communicable (infectious) diseases > Cross-border health issues

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Cross-border health issues

Individual Documents

Title: An assessment of vulnerability to HIV infection of boatmen in Teknaf, Bangladesh
Date of publication: 14 March 2008
Description/subject: Conclusion: "Boatmen in Teknaf are an integral part of a high-risk sexual behaviour network between Myanmar and Bangladesh. They are at risk of obtaining HIV infection due to cross border mobility and unsafe sexual practices. There is an urgent need for designing interventions targeting boatmen in Teknaf to combat an impending epidemic of HIV among this group. They could be included in the serological surveillance as a vulnerable group. Interventions need to address issues on both sides of the border, other vulnerable groups, and refugees. Strong political will and cross border collaboration is mandatory for such interventions."
Author/creator: Rukhsana Gazi, Alec Mercer, Tanyaporn Wansom, Humayun Kabir, Nirod Chandra Saha, Tasnim Azim
Language: English
Source/publisher: Conflict and Health 2008, 2:5
Format/size: pdf (154K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.conflictandhealth.com/content/2/1/5
Date of entry/update: 09 April 2008

Title: Displacement and disease: the Shan exodus and infectious disease implications for Thailand
Date of publication: 14 March 2008
Description/subject: Abstract: "Decades of neglect and abuses by the Burmese government have decimated the health of the peoples of Burma, particularly along her eastern frontiers, overwhelmingly populated by ethnic minorities such as the Shan. Vast areas of traditional Shan homelands have been systematically depopulated by the Burmese military regime as part of its counter-insurgency policy, which also employs widespread abuses of civilians by Burmese soldiers, including rape, torture, and extrajudicial executions. These abuses, coupled with Burmese government economic mismanagement which has further entrenched already pervasive poverty in rural Burma, have spawned a humanitarian catastrophe, forcing hundreds of thousands of ethnic Shan villagers to flee their homes for Thailand. In Thailand, they are denied refugee status and its legal protections, living at constant risk for arrest and deportation. Classified as “economic migrants,” many are forced to work in exploitative conditions, including in the Thai sex industry, and Shan migrants often lack access to basic health services in Thailand. Available health data on Shan migrants in Thailand already indicates that this population bears a disproportionately high burden of infectious diseases, particularly HIV, tuberculosis, lymphatic filariasis, and some vaccine-preventable illnesses, undermining progress made by Thailand’s public health system in controlling such entities. The ongoing failure to address the root political causes of migration and poor health in eastern Burma, coupled with the many barriers to accessing health programs in Thailand by undocumented migrants, particularly the Shan, virtually guarantees Thailand’s inability to sustainably control many infectious disease entities, especially along her borders with Burma."
Author/creator: Voravit Suwanvanichkij
Language: English
Source/publisher: Conflict and Health 2008, 2:4
Format/size: pdf (170K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.conflictandhealth.com/content/2/1/4
Date of entry/update: 09 April 2008

Title: Responding to infectious diseases in Burma and her border regions
Date of publication: 14 March 2008
Description/subject: Overview of the January 2007 conference, “Responding to Infectious Diseases in the Border Regions of South and Southeast Asia” hosted by the Faculty of Tropical Medicine of Mahidol University in Bangkok, Thailand.
Author/creator: Chris Beyrer, Thomas J Lee
Language: English
Source/publisher: Conflict and Health 2008, 2:2
Format/size: pdf (91K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.conflictandhealth.com/content/2/1/2
Date of entry/update: 09 April 2008

Title: Thailand Under Threat
Date of publication: June 2005
Description/subject: How Burma’s dams project could spread disease... "When Nang A Cha, a Shan migrant, consulted a doctor in Chiang Mai, northern Thailand, complaining of a fever and a swollen leg, the physician initially suspected malaria. A blood test ruled that out, but the young laboratory technician was still puzzled by what he saw under the microscope and sent the blood smear to his supervisor, a semi-retired man who had been trained in parasitology about 40 years previously. He was astounded by what he saw: for the first time in 30 years, he gazed at an old nemesis, an entity believed eradicated from urban Thailand. There was no mistaking the threadlike shadows in the blood smear: Wuchereria bancrofti, the parasite responsible for lymphatic filariasis, more colloquially known as elephantiasis, a term conjuring up images of grotesquely swollen limbs and severe disability. Lymphatic filariasis is transmitted by the bite of an infected mosquito. Once inside the human host, the parasite resides in the lymphatic system, producing larvae which then migrate back to the blood and are subsequently picked up by mosquitoes to continue the infection cycle. Over time, progressive damage to the lymphatics causes obstructions and subsequent swelling from accumulation of lymph..."
Author/creator: Withaya Huanok, MD
Language: English
Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy" Vol. 13, No. 6
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 28 April 2006

Title: Border Health (Thailand - Myanmar)
Date of publication: 19 March 2004
Description/subject: The Meeting on Development of Health Collaboration along Thailand-Myanmar Border areas: Five Presentations on Situation on Migrants and Six Report on Selected Health Problems/Activities along the border
Language: English
Source/publisher: World Health Organization /Thailand
Format/size: MS Office
Alternate URLs: http://www.whothailand.org/en/Section3/Section39/Section69_143.htm
Date of entry/update: 28 October 2010

Title: Karenni refugees living in Thai–Burmese border camps: traumatic experiences, mental health outcomes, and social functioning
Date of publication: 2004
Description/subject: Abstract In June 2001, we assessed mental health problems among Karenni refugees residing in camps in Mae Hong Son, Thailand, to determine the prevalence of mental illness, identify risk factors, and develop a culturally appropriate intervention program. A systematic random sample was used with stratification for the three camps; 495 people aged 15 years or older from 317 households participated. We constructed a questionnaire that included demographic characteristics, culture-specific symptoms of mental illness, the Hopkins Symptoms Checklist-25, the Harvard Trauma Questionnaire, and selected questions from the SF-36 Health Survey. Mental health outcome scores indicated elevated levels of depression and anxiety symptoms; post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) scores were comparable to scores in other communities affected by war and persecution. Psychosocial risk factors for poorer mental health and social functioning outcomes were insufficient food, higher number of trauma events, previous mental illness, and landmine injuries. Modifications in refugee policy may improve social functioning, and innovative mental health and psychosocial programs need to be implemented, monitored, and evaluated for efficacy. Published by Elsevier Ltd.
Author/creator: Barbara Lopes Cardozoa, Leisel Talleya, Ann Burtonb, Carol Crawford
Language: English
Source/publisher: Social Science & Medicine _58 (2004) 2637–2644
Format/size: pdf
Alternate URLs: http://www.whothailand.org/LinkFiles/Border_Health_Karenni_refugees_living_in_Thai_Burmese_border_c...
Date of entry/update: 28 October 2010

Title: Meeting at the crossroads: Myanmar migrants and their use of Thai health care services
Date of publication: 2004
Description/subject: This study assesses the use of health services among cross-border migrants from Myanmar who are now living in Kanchanaburi Province, western Thailand. The migrants comprise three main ethnic groups, namely the Burmese, Karen and Mon, most of whom have no formal education and are agricultural workers. Results indicate that although the migrants can access government health facilities, they are still more likely to buy drugs or use herbal medicines for treating themselves when they have minor illnesses, while the Thais are more likely to seek medical care from government facilities. The main difficulties for migrants in accessing health services are their legal status, financial constraints, and an inability to speak Thai. Moreover, health beliefs also determine the health-seeking behaviors of migrants, particularly among the Karen who believe in spirits and herbal medicine, while very few of the Burmese and the Mon do so. This leads to the conclusion that ethnicity is an important determinant of the utilization of health services by migrants from Myanmar in Kanchanaburi.
Author/creator: Pimonpan Isarabhakdi
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asian and Pacific migration journal via Mahidol University, THAILANDE
Format/size: pdf (2.44 MB)
Alternate URLs: http://cat.inist.fr/?aModele=afficheN&cpsidt=16017346
Date of entry/update: 28 October 2010

Title: In vitro susceptibility of Plasmodium falciparum isolates from Myanmar to antimalarial drugs
Date of publication: 2001
Description/subject: In vitro drug susceptibility profiles were assessed in 75 Plasmodium falciparum isolates from 4 sites in Myanmar. Except at Mawlamyine, the site closest to the Thai border, prevalence and degree of resistance to mefloquine were lower among the Myanmar isolates as compared with those from Thailand. Geometric mean concentration that inhibits 50% (IC50) and 90% (IC90) of Mawlamyine isolates were 51 nM (95% confidence interval [CI], 40-65) and 124 nM (95% CI, 104-149), respectively. At the nearest Thai site, Maesod, known for high-level multidrug resistance, the corresponding values for mefloquine IC50 and IC90 were 92 nM (95% CI, 71-121) and 172 nM (95% CI, 140-211). Mefloquine susceptibility of P. falciparum in Myanmar, except for Mawlamyine, was consistent with clinical-parasitological efficacy in semi-immune people. High sensitivity to artemisinin compounds was observed in this geographical region. The data suggest that highly mefloquine-resistant P. falciparum is concentrated in a part of the Thai-Myanmar border region.
Author/creator: C Wongsrichanalai, K Lin, LW Pang, MA Faiz, H Noedl, T Wimonwattrawatee, A Laoboonchai, and F Kawamoto
Language: English
Source/publisher: The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
Format/size: html, pdf
Alternate URLs: http://www.ajtmh.org/cgi/content/abstract/65/5/450
Date of entry/update: 28 October 2010