An Overview of the Health Examination of Foreign Laborers in Taiwan between 2008 and 2012

Li-Jue Wu1, Wei-Hsu Leng1, Jer-Jea Yen2

2014 Vol.30 NO.2

Correspondence Author: Li-Jue Wu

  • 1.Division of Quarantine, Taiwan Centers for Disease Control, Ministry of Health and Welfare
  • 2.Division of Acute Infectious Diseases, Taiwan Centers for Disease Control, Ministry of Health and Welfare


       Foreign laborers have been recruited in Taiwan since October 1989. To prevent foreign laborers from bringing infectious diseases into the country, all foreign laborers are required to undergo health examinations before entering the country, within three days after arrival, and at 6-, 18-, and 30-month stages of employment in Taiwan. This report summarizes the changes in regulations governing the health examinations for foreign laborers between 2008 and 2012, and the results of these examinations. The Department of Health, Executive Yuan (reform the Ministry of Health and Welfare), has amended twice in 2009 and 2011, on the “Regulations Governing Management of the Health Examination of Employed Aliens”. Foreign laborers are no longer tested for Hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) and Blastocystis hominis is now considered as non-pathogenic. Measles and rubella have been added to the pre-arrival health screenings and proof of immunity such as a laboratory report of positive antibody titers or a certificate of immunization must be submitted. Those who tested positive for Entamoeba histolytica during regular health examinations can now be treated and re-tested in Taiwan. The failure rates for foreign laborers in their regular health examinations from 2008 to 2012 were 8.54%, 2.21%, 0.86%, 0.85% and 1.08%, respectively. The detection rate of intestinal parasites in these years was 8.36%, 2.05%, 0.69%, 0.66% and 0.84%, respectively.