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23.06.2018 | Original Paper

Factors Influencing Health Service Utilization Among Asian Immigrant Nail Salon Workers in the Greater New York City Area

Journal of Community Health
Jin Young Seo, Ying-Yu Chao, Ka Man Yeung, Shiela M. Strauss


Most nail salon workers in the greater New York City area are Asian immigrant women. They are exposed daily to potentially toxic chemicals and hazards in their workplace, making them more vulnerable for possible health problems. The study’s primary purpose was to identify factors influencing past year healthcare utilization among Asian immigrant women working in nail salons. A cross-sectional study was conducted based on a modification of Andersen’s behavioral model of healthcare utilization in which 148 Korean and Chinese immigrant women currently working in nail salons were surveyed. The questionnaire included: (1) individual health determinants, (2) health service utilization in the past year, and (3) work environment, work-related health concerns, and work-related health problems. Descriptive statistics and multivariate logistic regression models assessed factors related to past year healthcare utilization. Women who had health insurance (p < .01), a usual source of care (p < .01), low educational attainment (p < .05), and more work-related health symptoms (p < .05) were more likely to visit a primary care provider. Women who had health insurance (p < .01), a usual source of care (p < .05), and low educational attainment (p < .05), were also more likely to visit a woman’s health provider. Korean (rather than Chinese) women (p < .05) and women who perceived themselves to be in fair/poor health (p < .05) were more likely to see a traditional provider of Eastern medicine. Asian immigrant women who work in nail salons have workplace health and safety concerns. They generally use Western rather than traditional medicine, with different factors related to these two types of medicine.

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