Marco Terraneo Mara Tognetti Bordogna

We can study the relationship between immigration and health in Italy? Many issues, yet few data

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Ethnical origin is a key dimension to explain differentials in access/ utilization of healthcare services. The increase in the immigrant pop¬ulation in Italy puts further strain the capacity of health systems to respond adequately to health needs. In many cases, migrants have higher health risks than the native population, as a result of lesser granted rights, worse socio-economic conditions, different values and culture. Moreover, they experience numerous barriers during their stay in the host country. On the other side, the relationship between immigration and health cannot be fully understood without exploring how health services are organized and the role of professionals who provide health care services. In the first part of the paper we briefly examine these topics. Next, we reviewed the few Italian data sources in order to study the relationship between immigration and health. Specifically, we show their limits and the issues uncovered by available data, related to following domains: structural surveys features; characteristics of the migration experience; barriers, beliefs, values, practices of care; the supply side of health services. Finally, we identify four challenges that need to be addressed in data collection on migration and health topic: the recognition of the problem; the need of resources; an in-depth theoretical reflection; a refined methodological approach.


  • Immigration
  • Health
  • Health Services
  • Data Sources
  • Data Collection


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