Hostname: page-component-7dc689bd49-qtdzc Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2023-03-20T09:17:22.966Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "useRatesEcommerce": false } hasContentIssue true

The ‘healthy immigrant’ effect: initial evidence for Ireland

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  19 January 2011

Anne Nolan*
Affiliation:
Social Research Division, Economic and Social Research Institute, Dublin, Ireland; Department of Economics, Trinity College Dublin, Ireland
*
*Correspondence to: Anne Nolan, Social Research Division, Economic and Social Research Institute, Whitaker Square, Sir John Rogerson's Quay, Dublin 2, Ireland. Email: anne.nolan@esri.ie

Abstract

The period from 1996 to 2008 was one of rapid economic and social change in Ireland, with one of the most significant changes being the transition from a situation of net emigration to one of substantial net immigration. Although research on the impact of immigration on Irish society, as well as the labour market characteristics and experiences of immigrants in Ireland has increased in recent years, comparatively little is known about the health status of immigrants to Ireland. An extensive international literature has documented a ‘healthy immigrant’ effect for large immigrant-receiving countries such as the United States, Canada and Australia, whereby the health status of immigrants is better than comparable native-born individuals. There is also evidence to suggest that immigrants’ health status deteriorates with time spent in the host country. However, the Irish immigration experience differs considerably from that of countries that have been the focus of research on the ‘healthy immigrant’ effect. Using microdata from a nationally representative survey of the population in 2007, this paper finds only limited evidence in favour of a ‘healthy immigrant’ effect for Ireland, although the distinctive features of the Irish immigrant population, and the nature of the data available, may partly explain the results.

Type
Articles
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2012

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Antecol, H., Bedard, K. (2005), ‘Unhealthy Assimilation: Why Do Immigrants Converge to American Health Status Levels?’, IZA Discussion Paper no. 1654, IZA, Bonn.Google Scholar
Barrell, R., FitzGerald, J., Riley, R. (2007), ‘Eu Enlargement and Migration: Assessing the Macroeconomic Impacts’, Working Paper no. 203, Economic and Social Research Institute, Dublin.Google Scholar
Barrett, A., Duffy, D. (2007), ‘Are Ireland's Immigrants Integrating into Its Labour Market?’, IZA Discussion Paper no. 2838. IZA, Bonn.Google Scholar
Barrett, A.McCarthy, Y. (2007a), ‘The Earnings of Immigrants in Ireland: Results From the 2005 Eu Survey of Income and Living Conditions’, in A. Barrett, I. Kearney and M. O'Brien (eds), Quarterly Economic Commentary (Winter 2007), Dublin: Economic and Social Research Institute, 4262.Google Scholar
Barrett, A.McCarthy, Y. (2007b), ‘Immigrants in a booming economy: analysing their earnings and welfare dependence’, Labour, 21(4): 789808.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Barrett, A., McCarthy, Y. (2008), ‘Immigrants and Welfare Programmes: Exploring the Interactions Between Immigrant Characteristics, Immigrant Welfare Dependence and Welfare Policy’, Working Paper no. 238, Economic and Social Research Institute, Dublin.Google Scholar
Barrett, A., FitzGerald, J.Nolan, B. (2002), ‘Earnings inequality, returns to education and immigration into Ireland’, Labour Economics, 9(5): 665680.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Barrett, A., Bergin, A.Duffy, D. (2006), ‘The labour market characteristics and labour market impacts of immigrants in Ireland’, Economic and Social Review, 37(1): 126.Google Scholar
Barrett, A., McGuinness, S., O'Brien, M. (2008), ‘The Immigrant Earnings Disadvantage Across the Earnings and Skills Distributions: The Case of Immigrants from the Eu's Member States in Ireland’, Working Paper no. 236, Economic and Social Research Institute, Dublin.Google Scholar
Barrett, A., Kearney, I., Goggin, J.Conefrey, T. (2010), Quarterly Economic Commentary, Summer 2010, Dublin: Economic and Social Research Institute.Google Scholar
Borjas, G. (1985), ‘Assimilation, changes in cohort quality, and the earnings of immigrants’, Journal of Labour Economics, 3(4): 463489.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Borjas, G. (1994), ‘The economics of immigration’, Journal of Economic Literature, 32: 16671717.Google Scholar
Burstrom, B.Fredlund, P. (2001), ‘Self rated health: is it as good a predictor of subsequent mortality among adults in lower as well as in higher social classes?’, Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, 55(11): 836840.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Carrasco-Garrido, P., De Miguel, G., Hernandez-Barrera, V.Jimenez-Garcia, R. (2007), ‘Health profiles, lifestyles and use of health resources by the immigrant population resident in Spain’, European Journal of Public Health, 17(5): 503507.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Chiswick, B., Liang Lee, Y., Miller, P. (2006), ‘Immigrant Selection Systems and Immigrant Health’, IZA Discussion Paper no. 2345, Institute for the Study of Labour, Bonn.Google Scholar
Central Statistics Office (CSO) (2007), Volume 5 – Ethnic or Cultural Background (Including the Irish Traveller Community), Dublin: CSO.Google Scholar
Central Statistics Office ( CSO) (2010a), Population and Migration Estimates – April 2010, Dublin: CSO.Google Scholar
Central Statistics Office ( CSO) (2010b), Quarterly National Household Survey, Quarter 1 2010, Dublin: CSO.Google Scholar
Duffy, D. (2007), ‘The Housing Tenure of Immigrants in Ireland: Some Preliminary Analysis’, Working Paper no. 188, Economic and Social Research Institute, Dublin.Google Scholar
Dunn, J.Dyck, I. (2000), ‘Social determinants of health in Canada's immigrant population: results from the national population health survey’, Social Science and Medicine, 51: 15731593.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
FitzGerald, J., Bergin, A., Kearney, I., Barrett, A., Duffy, D., Garrett, S.McCarthy, Y. (2005), Medium-Term Review 2005–2012, Dublin: Economic and Social Research Institute.Google Scholar
Gee, E., Kobayashi, K.Prus, S. (2004), ‘Examining the “healthy immigrant effect” in mid-to-later-life: findings from the Canadian community health survey’, Canadian Journal of Aging, 23(S1): 6169.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gordon-Larsen, P., Mullan Harris, K., Ward, D.Popkin, B. (2003), ‘Acculturation and overweight behaviours among hispanic immigrants to the US: the national longitudinal study of adolescent health’, Social Science and Medicine, 57: 20232034.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hernández-Quevedo, C.Jiménez-Rubio, D. (2009), ‘A comparison of the health status and health care utilisation patterns between foreigners and the national population in Spain: new evidence from the Spanish national health survey’, Social Science and Medicine, 69: 370378.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Health Service Executive ( HSE) (2009), National Intercultural Health Strategy 2007–2012, Dublin: HSE.Google Scholar
Heckman, J.Leamer, E. (2007), Handbook of Econometrics (Volume 6A), Amsterdam: North-Holland.Google Scholar
Hughes, G., McGinnity, F., O'Connell, P.Quinn, E. (2007), ‘The Impact of Immigration’, in T. Fahey, H. Russell and C. Whelan (eds), Best of Times? The Social Impact of the Celtic Tiger, Dublin: Institute of Public Administration, 217244.Google Scholar
Idler, E.Benyamini, Y. (1997), ‘Self-rated health and mortality: a review of twenty-seven community studies’, Journal of Health and Social Behaviour, 38(1): 2137.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Jasso, G., Massey, D., Rosenzweig, M., Smith, J. (2004), ‘Immigrant Health: Selectivity and Acculturation’, IFS Working Paper 04/23, Institute for Fiscal Studies, London.Google Scholar
Kennedy, S.McDonald, J. (2006), ‘Immigrant mental health and unemployment’, The Economic Record, 82(259): 445459.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kennedy, S., McDonald, J.Biddle, N. (2006), The Healthy Immigrant Effect and Immigrant Selection: Evidence from Four Countries, Hamilton: McMaster University.Google Scholar
Lalchandani, S., Sheil, O.MacQuillan, K. (2001), ‘Obstetric profiles and pregnancy outcomes of immigrant women with refugee status’, Irish Medical Journal, 94(3): 7980.Google Scholar
Laroche, M. (2000), ‘Health status and health services utilisation of Canada's immigrant and non-immigrant populations’, Canadian Public Policy, 26(1): 5175.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Layte, R. (2007), ‘Equity in the utilisation of hospital inpatient services in Ireland? An improved approach to the measurement of health need’, Economic and Social Review, 38(2): 191210.Google Scholar
Layte, R., Nolan, A., Nolan, B., van Ourti, T. (2005), ‘Health and Morbidity by Age and Socio-Economic Characteristics’, ENEPRI Research Report no.15. ENEPRI, Brussels.Google Scholar
Layte, R., Nolan, A.Nolan, B. (2007), Poor Prescriptions: Poverty and Access to Community Health Services, Dublin: Combat Poverty Agency.Google Scholar
Lindeboom, M.van Doorslaer, E. (2004), ‘Cut-point shift and index shift in self-reported health’, Journal of Health Economics, 23(6): 10831099.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
McDonald, J. (2006), ‘The Health Behaviours of Immigrants and Native-Born People in Canada’, AMC Working Paper Series, Atlantic Metropolis Centre, Hamilton.Google Scholar
McDonald, J.Kennedy, S. (2004), ‘Insights into the “healthy immigrant effect”: health status and health service use of immigrants to Canada’, Social Science and Medicine, 59: 16131627.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
McDonald, J.Kennedy, S. (2005), ‘Is migration to Canada associated with unhealthy weight gain? Overweight and obesity among Canada's immigrants’, Social Science and Medicine, 61: 24692481.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
McGinnity, F., O'Connell, P., Quinn, E.Williams, J. (2006), Migrants’ Experiences of Racism and Discrimination in Ireland: Survey Report, Dublin: Economic and Social Research Institute.Google Scholar
McGinnity, F., Nelson, J., Lunn, P.Quinn, E. (2009), Discrimination in Recruitment: Evidence from a Field Experiment, Dublin: Equality Authority/Economic and Social Research Institute.Google Scholar
Minns, C. (2005), ‘Immigration policy and the skills of Irish immigrants: evidence and implications’, Journal of the Statistical and Social Inquiry Society of Ireland, 34: 6692.Google Scholar
Morgan, K., McGee, H., Watson, D., Perry, I., Barry, M., Shelley, E., Harrington, J., Molcho, M., Layte, R., Tully, N., van Lente, E., Ward, M., Lutomski, J., Conroy, R.Brugha, R. (2008), Slán 2007: Survey of Lifestyles, Attitudes and Nutrition in Ireland (Main Report), Dublin: Stationery Office.Google Scholar
National Economic and Social Council (2006), Managing Migration in Ireland: A Social and Economic Analysis, Dublin: National Economic and Social Council.Google Scholar
Newbold, B. (2005), ‘Self-rated health within the Canadian immigrant population: risk and the healthy immigrant effect’, Social Science and Medicine, 60: 13591370.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Newbold, B.Danforth, J. (2003), ‘Health status and Canada's immigrant population’, Social Science and Medicine, 57: 19811995.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ng, E., Wilkins, R., Gendron, F.Berthelot, J. (2005), Dynamics of Immigrants’ Health in Canada: Evidence from the National Population Health Survey, Ottawa: Statistics Canada.Google Scholar
O'Connell, P.McGinnity, F. (2008), Immigrants at Work: Nationality and Ethnicity in the Irish Labour Market, Dublin: Equality Authority & Economic and Social Research Institute.Google Scholar
Office of the Refugee Appeals Commissioner (2009), Annual Report 2008, Dublin: Office of the Refugee Appeals Commissioner.Google Scholar
Perez, C. (2002), ‘Health Status and Health Behaviour among Immigrants’, Health Reports 13. Statistics Canada, Ottawa.Google Scholar
Quinn, E. (2007), Policy Analysis Report on Asylum and Migration: Ireland 2006, Dublin: European Migration Network & Economic and Social Research Institute.Google Scholar
Russell, H., Quinn, E., King O'Rian, R.McGinnity, F. (2008), The Experience of Discrimination in Ireland: Analysis of the QNHS Equality Module, Dublin: Equality Authority and Economic and Social Research Institute.Google Scholar
Treacy, A., Byrne, P., Collins, C.Geary, M. (2006), ‘Pregnancy outcome in immigrant women in the Rotunda Hospital’, Irish Medical Journal, 99(1): 2223.Google Scholar
van Doorslaer, E., Wagstaff, A., van der Berg, H., Christiansen, T., De Graeve, D., Duchesne, I., Gerdtham, U., Gerfin, M., Geurts, J., Gross, L., Hakkinen, U., John, J., Klavus, J., Leu, R., Nolan, B., O'Donnell, O., Propper, C., Puffer, F., Schellhorn, M., Sundberg, G.Winkelhake, O. (2000), ‘Equity in the delivery of health care in Europe and the US’, Journal of Health Economics, 19(5): 553583.CrossRefGoogle Scholar