Exploring the accessibility of health care service to Rohingya refugees in Malaysia


  • Suseela Devi Chandran
  • Nasiha Sakina
  • Norazah Mohd Suki Universiti Utara Malaysia




Healthcare, Refugees, State, Rohingya


This paper focuses on social security threats brought by the Rohingya refugees in Malaysia especially on healthcare services.  First, a brief historical background of Rohingya ethnic and how this ethnic became refugees is discussed. Secondly, this paper provides a preview of Rohingyas during post-Myanmar’s political transition. and a short background of Rohingyas in Malaysia. Third, this paper examines the healthcare services among the Rohingya refugees in Klang Valley, Malaysia, and the accessibility of healthcare.


Abdullah, A. (1962). Identiti dan Minoriti di Asia Tenggara: Sejarah Masyarakat Rohingya di Myanmar. Master’s Dissertation.

Abudayya, A., Thoresen, M., Abed, Y., & Holmboe-Ottesen, G. (2007). Overweight, stunting, and anemia are public health problems among low socioeconomic groups in-school adolescents (12-15 years) in the North Gaza Strip. Nutrition Research, 27(12), 762–771.

Adelman, H. (2001). From refugees to forced migration: The UNHCR and human security. International Migration Review, 35(1), 7–32.

Ahmad, A. T., Ghazali, A. Z., & Abdul Rahman, Z. (2008). Rohingya dan Konflik Etnik di Arakan (Rakhine). Konflik Dunia Abad ke-20. Kuala Lumpur: Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka.

Alston, P. (1979). The United Nations’ Specialized Agencies and Implementation of the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights. Colum. J. Transnat’l L., 18, 79.

ARSA. (2017a). ARSA: Who are the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army? Retrieved from http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/09/myanmar-arakan-rohingya-salvation-army-170912060700394.html

ARSA. (2017b). ARSA group denies links with al-Qaeda, ISIL and others. Retrieved from http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/09/arsa-group-denies-links-al-qaeda-isil-170914094048024.html

BBC. (2015). Why Are So Many Rohingya Migrants Stranded at Sea? BBC news.

Zawacki, B. (2012). Defining Myanmar's Rohingya Problem. Hum. Rts. Brief, 20, 18.

Betts, A., Bloom, L., Kaplan, J. D., & Omata, N. (2014). Refugee economies: Rethinking popular assumptions. The University of Oxford, Refugee Studies Centre.n

Lwin, N. S. (2016). Making Rohingya Statelessness. Retrieved November 30, 2016, from http://drkokogyi.wordpress.com/2012/10/31/making-rohingya-statelessness/

Malay Mail. (2017). TB-infected convicts on the rise.

Myanmar. (2012). Myanmar: “My world is finished”. Rohingya targeted in crimes against humanity in Myanmar.

Penchansky, R., & Thomas, J. W. (1981). The concept of access: definition and relationship to consumer satisfaction. Medical Care, 127–140.

Pocock, N. S., Mahmood, S. ., Zimmerman, C., & Orcutt, M. (2017). Imminent health crises among the Rohingya people of Myanmar. Biomedical Journal, 1–5. https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.j5210

Radford, P. (2012). Nowhere to go for Rohingya. Retrieved December 31, 2016, from ttp://atimes.com/atimes/Southeast_Asia/NK09Ae03.html

Richmond, A. H., & Valtonen, K. (1994). Global Apartheid: Refugees, racism, and the new world order. Refuge: Canada's Journal on Refugees, 25-28.

Saurman, E. (2016). Improving access: modifying Penchansky and Thomas’s Theory of Access. Journal of Health Services Research & Policy, 21(1), 36–39.

Teng, T. S., & Zalilah, M. S. (2011). Nutritional status of Rohingya children in Kuala Lumpur. Malaysian J Med Heal Sci, 7(1), 41-9.

The Arakan Project. (2016). The Arakan Project Key Issues Concerning The Situation Of Stateless Rohingya Women And Girls In Rakhine State, Myanmar.

The Government Could Have Stopped. (2016). Human Right Watch. Retrieved from http://www.hrw.org/sites/default/files/reports/burma0812webwcover_0

Triandafyllidou, A., & Gropas, R. (2016). European immigration: a sourcebook. Routledge.

Tsoukala, A. (2008). Boundary-creating processes and the social construction of threat. Alternatives, 33(2), 137–152.

UNHCR. (2001, March). Prevention and response to sexual and gender-based violence in refugee situations. Inter-agency lessons learned. Conference Proceedings.

UNHCR. (2016). The World Number. Retrieved from http://popstats.unhcr.org/en/overview

Wake, C., & Cheung, T. (2016). Livelihood strategies of Rohingya refugees in Malaysia “ We want to live in dignity,” Humanitarian Policy Group. https://archive.nyu.edu/handle/2451/40703

Weiner, M. (1995). The global migration crisis: the challenge to states and to human rights. Harpercollins College Division.WHO. (2015). The Work of WHO in the South-east Asia Region.

Wood, G., & Phelan, J. (2006). Uncertain return to southern Sudan. Forced Migration Review, 25, 49–50.

Wyszewianski, L. (2002). Access to Care: Remembering Old Lessons. Health Services Research, 37(6), 1441–1443. https://doi.org/10.1111/1475-6773.12171

Yoong, J., Khan, M. S., Schwanke-Khilji, S., Tun, Z. M., Watson, S., & Coker, R. J. (2017). Large funding inflows, limited local capacity and emerging disease control priorities: a situational assessment of tuberculosis control in Myanmar. Health policy and planning, 32(suppl_2), ii22-ii31. https://doi.org/10.1093/heapol/czx062

Yue, C., & Mensah, B. L. (2017). Identity and the Rohingya Question in Myanmar, 4(3), 473–481.

Zarni, M., & Cowley, A. (2014). The slow-burning genocide of Myanmar’s Rohingya reasons. Tomás Ojéa Quintana, United Nations Special Rapporteur for Human Rights, London Conference on.




How to Cite

Chandran, S. D., Sakina, N., & Mohd Suki, N. (2020). Exploring the accessibility of health care service to Rohingya refugees in Malaysia. Bussecon Review of Social Sciences (2687-2285), 2(3), 16–23. https://doi.org/10.36096/brss.v3i3.203