Bangladesh has about 5,400 garment factories with 4 million workers and up to 12 million livelihoods dependent on it directly or indirectly. Bangladesh, with a revenue of US $26 billions per year, is the second largest exporter of ready-made-garments (RMG) in the world. Majority, if not all, of the factories are located in the urban areas. Thus, the workers of the garment factories constitute a large urban population in Dhaka, Gazipur, Tongi, Mirpur, Savar, Jaidevpur, and Mymensingh. Another unique fact about the garment industry is that more than 80% of garment workers are women. The workers of the garment industry in Bangladesh constitute a large cache of urban population in Bangladesh, who receive very little or no medical care at present. There is no reliable data regarding the disease prevalence or burden among this urban population. Hence, this project will provide for the development of a database of urban healthcare and disease burden, and also will be beneficial for the garment workers in the target area in disease diagnosis and treatment.
Dr. Ruhul Abid, Brown associate professor of surgery, traveled to Bangladesh in early November to provide health care to thousands of Rohingya refugees fleeing governmental persecution in Myanmar.
Technical Assistance for Understanding Disease Burden Among Bangladeshi Garment Workers
Full Title: Understanding Disease Burden among the Garments Workers and Establishing an Effective Linkage between the In-House Clinics and Nearby State and Non-State Health Facilities
Funding Agency: Crown Agents/Department for International Development (DFID), UKAID, Joint Donor Technical Assistance Fund (JDTAF)
Funding period: 8/1/2016-12/31/2016
Total award: $238,000
Ruhul Abid, MD, PhD,Associate Professor of Surgery (Research) recently received funding for a new project studying the health of garment workers in Bangladesh. This funding comes from the Crown Agents, UK, a procurement agency for the Department for International Development (DFID), UK, also known as UKAID. The recipient of the project deliverables is Health, Population and Nutrition Sector Development Program (HPNSDP) of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MOHFW), Government of the Peoples Republic of Bangladesh. MOHFW has been working with HPNSDP with the goal of ensuring quality and equitable health care for all citizens in Bangladesh by improving access to and utilization of health, population and nutrition services.
The main objective of this new project is to ascertain the disease burden among garment workers and to develop linkages for making necessary health services available to them with the aim of contributing towards improving urban primary healthcare and achievement of universal health coverage in Bangladesh.