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Open AccessArticle

Contact Mixing Patterns and Population Movement among Migrant Workers in an Urban Setting in Thailand

1
Department of Fundamentals of Public Health, Faculty of Public Health, Burapha University, Chon Buri 20131, Thailand
2
Bureau of Epidemiology Department of Disease Control, Bangkok 11000, Thailand
3
Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok 10330, Thailand
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Department of Epidemiology, Faculty of Public Health, Mahidol University, Bangkok 10400, Thailand
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Department of Global Health and Development, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, London WC1E 7HT, UK
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Department of Disease Control, Ministry of Public Health, Bangkok 11000, Thailand
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Institute of Molecular Biosciences (MB), Mahidol University, Nakhon Pathom 73170, Thailand
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Department of Tropical Hygiene, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University Bangkok, Bangkok 10400, Thailand
9
Mahidol-Oxford Tropical Medicine Research Unit, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, Bangkok 10400, Thailand
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(7), 2237; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17072237 (registering DOI)
Received: 20 February 2020 / Revised: 16 March 2020 / Accepted: 17 March 2020 / Published: 26 March 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Health and Wellbeing of Migrant Populations)
Data relating to contact mixing patterns among humans are essential for the accurate modeling of infectious disease transmission dynamics. Here, we describe contact mixing patterns among migrant workers in urban settings in Thailand, based on a survey of 369 migrant workers of three nationalities. Respondents recorded their demographic data, including age, sex, nationality, workplace, income, and education. Each respondent chose a single day to record their contacts; this resulted in a total of more than 8300 contacts. The characteristics of contacts were recorded, including their age, sex, nationality, location of contact, and occurrence of physical contact. More than 75% of all contacts occurred among migrants aged 15 to 39 years. The contacts were highly clustered in this age group among migrant workers of all three nationalities. There were far fewer contacts between migrant workers with younger and older age groups. The pattern varied slightly among different nationalities, which was mostly dependent upon the types of jobs taken. Half of migrant workers always returned to their home country at most once a year and on a seasonal basis. The present study has helped us gain a better understanding of contact mixing patterns among migrant workers in urban settings. This information is useful both when simulating disease epidemics and for guiding optimal disease control strategies among this vulnerable section of the population. View Full-Text
Keywords: contact mixing patterns; migrant workers; urban setting contact mixing patterns; migrant workers; urban setting
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Mahikul, W.; Kripattanapong, S.; Hanvoravongchai, P.; Meeyai, A.; Iamsirithaworn, S.; Auewarakul, P.; Pan-ngum, W. Contact Mixing Patterns and Population Movement among Migrant Workers in an Urban Setting in Thailand. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 2237.

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