Filipino domestic workers in Hong Kong: Health related behaviors, health locus of control and social support

E. A. Holroyd, A. Molassiotis, R. E. Taylor-Pilliae

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Scopus citations


A total of 290 female Filipino domestic helpers residing in Hong Kong completed a concurrent cross sectional survey designed to provide an initial report of basic data which measured mental health symptoms, health-related behaviors, health locus of control and social support. The four top ranking symptoms of mental distress reported included waking in the early hours, loneliness, worry and taking a long time to get to sleep. In general, the level of health related behaviors was high, with a satisfactory diet and low rates of alcohol, nicotine and coffee consumption. However, few women surveyed had previously had a Pap smear. There were also low scores for other preventive health practices. Reinforcement for health behaviors was seen as either a matter of chance or being influenced by powerful others for two thirds of the women. The conclusion highlights the intersection between gender, immigration and social class by drawing attention to issues of acceptance and accessibility of healthcare services for immigrant within host countries. In addition, cultural directions for immigrant health education are outlined.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)181-205
Number of pages25
JournalWomen and Health
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - 2001


  • Filipino
  • Health related behaviors
  • Hong Kong
  • Immigration
  • Locus of control
  • Social support

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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