Encyclopedia of Immigrant Health

2012 Edition
| Editors: Sana Loue, Martha Sajatovic

Mortality and Morbidity

  • Ravi K. Sharma
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-5659-0_522

Mortality and morbidity are often used as indicators of health status. Mortality is a unique and final event that is clearly defined and measurable. Morbidity events refer to diseases and illnesses. Both of these indicators can be used to look at the immigrant health.

Assessing immigrant health in terms of mortality and morbidity is a complex issue for a number of reasons. First, there are major deficiencies in national health statistics. Often the immigrant population as recorded in the official statistical systems does not differentiate between naturalized immigrants, permanent residents, nonimmigrants (e.g., temporary workers, students, and visitors), and illegal immigrants. Second, immigrant populations are heterogeneous, not only in terms of national origin but also racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic composition, even from within the same country. Third, migration selectivity renders the interpretation of immigrant health problematic. Finally, due to limitations of data, it is...

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Suggested Readings

  1. Abraído-Lanza, A. F., Chao, M. T., & Flórez, K. R. (2005). Do healthy behaviors decline with greater acculturation?: Implications for the Latino mortality paradox. Social Science & Medicine, 61, 1243–1255.Google Scholar
  2. Kandula, N. R., Kersey, M., & Lurie, N. (2004). Assuring the health of immigrants: What the leading health indicators tell us. Annual Review of Public Health, 25, 357–376.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Palloni, A., & Arias, E. (2004). Paradox lost: Explaining the Hispanic adult mortality advantage. Demography, 41, 385–415.PubMedGoogle Scholar

Suggested Resources

  1. McKay, L., Macintyre, S., & Ellaway, A. (2003) Migration and health: A review of the international literature. Glasgow: MRC Social & Public Health Sciences Unit, Occasional Paper No 12. Retrieved June 10, 2010, from http://www.sphsu.mrc.ac.uk/files/File/library/occasional/OP012.pdf. Accessed June 10, 2010.

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ravi K. Sharma
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Behavioral & Community Health Sciences, Institute for Evaluation Science in Community HealthGraduate School of Public Health, University of PittsburghPittsburghUSA