Social Networks Are Associated with Healthcare Utilization Among Taxi and For-Hire Vehicle Drivers: a Latent Class Analysis

  • Devika R. Jutagir
  • Imran Mujawar
  • Soo Young Kim
  • Andrew Rasmussen
  • Bharat Narang
  • Francesca GanyEmail author
Concise Research Report


Taxi and for-hire vehicle (FHV) driving is a growing occupation, with over 185,000 licensed taxi/FHV drivers in New York City (NYC) alone and well over 300,000 in the USA.1, 2 Most licensed NYC drivers have racial/ethnic minority backgrounds and are authorized immigrants.1 Because of their sedentary occupation, poor diet, pollution exposure, discrimination, stressors, and ethnic backgrounds, drivers are at an elevated risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD), cancer, hypertension, obesity, and diabetes.3

Most NYC drivers are independent contractors without workplace-sponsored health insurance.1, 3 Hence, many are uninsured (34% in a recent study) and lack a primary care provider (PCP).3 According to Andersen’s widely acknowledged behavioral model of health services use, social context predisposes individuals to use services or not.4 In low socioeconomic status and immigrant populations, social networks are important conduits for health information.5Subgroups of medically...



The authors would like to thank Sonya Smyk, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, for editorial support. She was not compensated beyond her regular salary.

Author Contributions

I.M., A.R., and F.G. conceived the idea for the manuscript. F.G. oversaw data collection. I.M., S.K., B.N., D.J., and F.G. contributed to data analysis. D.J., I.M., A.R., S.K., and F.G. interpreted the results. D.J. took the lead on writing the article with assistance from I.M. and F.G. and input from A.R. and S.K.

Funding Information

This study was supported by the following: P30: National Cancer Institute (P30 CA008748), T32: National Cancer Institute (T32 CA00946), U01: National Center on Minority Health and Health Disparities (U01 MD010648), R01: National Institute of Nursing Research (R01 NR015265), R24: National Center on Minority Health and Health Disparities (R24 MD008058).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center Institutional Review Board protocol no. for this study is X13-008 (exempt status).

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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    New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission. Taxicab Factbook 2018. 2018; Accessed 19 August 2019.
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    Bureau of Labor Statistics, United States Department of Labor. Taxi Drivers and Chauffers. 2017; Accessed 15 January 2019.
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Copyright information

© Society of General Internal Medicine 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral SciencesMemorial Sloan Kettering Cancer CenterNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyFordham UniversityNew YorkUSA

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