Maternal and Child Health Research Program

H H S Department of Health and Human Services
Health Resources and Services Administration

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Advancing Applied MCH Research

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Health Access for Children of Immigrants

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Project Number: R40 MC 05470-02
Grantee: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Department/Center: Department of Maternal and Child Health
Project Date: 09/01/2005

Final Report

Health Access for Children of Immigrants Final Report (PDF) Exit Disclaimer

Principal Investigator

Andrea Campbell Weathers, M.D., Dr.P.H.
Assistant Professor
400 Rosenau Hall, CB # 7445
Chapel Hill, NC  27599-7445
Phone: (919) 966-2010
Email: andrea_weathers@unc.edu

Age

  • Infancy (0-12 months)
  • Toddlerhood (1-2 years)
  • Early Childhood (3-5 years)
  • Middle Childhood (6-11 years)
  • Adolescence (12-18 years)

Abstract

Migration will be a defining characteristic of the 21st century, yet little is known about the health of immigrants. Over the past 3 decades, the United States has experienced a wave of immigration that is both quantitatively and qualitatively unlike previous waves. The ethnic diversity that characterizes this wave of immigrants already has reshaped the demographic composition of the United States. Families with children are central to this demographic change, as children of immigrants are the fastest growing segment of the U.S. child population. Despite this growth, few studies examine health care access among children of immigrants. The majority of existing health access studies on children of immigrants lack national representation and lack inclusion of indicators of family migration. Given the inherent dependency of children upon adults, understanding of access to health care for children of immigrants may be improved by investigating the migration characteristics of their caretakers. The results of such analyses can advance the current knowledge pool regarding health access disparities among children of immigrants, as compared to those born to natives. Moreover, improved understanding of these relationships can be used to inform effective program and health policy development for this vulnerable and growing population of children. The proposed research provides a comprehensive examination of the association between caretaker immigration structure and access to health care among children of immigrants in the United States. Both potential access (barriers to care) and realized access (use of health care) will be examined. Univariate and bivariate analyses will be complemented by multivariate analyses using logistic regression, multinomial logistic regression, and 2-part econometric models. Moreover, subgroup analyses will test these adjusted models for variation of the associations among children of different racial, ethnic, and national origin categories. MCHB 2004 - 2009 Strategic Research Issues addressed include #II (elimination of health disparities and barriers to health care access) and #IV (promotion of healthy development of MCH populations). This proposal also addresses the Healthy People 2010 Leading Health Indicator of Access to Health Care.

Publications

Listed is descending order by year published.

Weathers A, Novak S, Sastry N, Norton EC. Parental nativity is an important factor associated with where children usually go for health care. Matern Child Health J. 2008 Jul;12(4):499-508. Epub 2007 Oct 26.

Weathers AC, Novak SP, Sastry N, Norton EC. Parental nativity affects children's health and access to care. J Immigr Minor Health. 2008 Apr;10(2):155-65.

Weathers AC, Novak SP, Sastry N, Norton EC. Parental nativity is an important factor associated with where children usually go for health care. Matern Child Health J. 2008 Jul;12(4):499-508. Epub 2007 Oct 26.

Keywords

Access to Health Care, Health Disparities, Health Care Utilization, Well-Child Pediatric Care, Primary Care, Immigrant Populations

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