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Physical and mental health inequalities between native and immigrant Swedes

Journal article
Authors Vania Ranjbar
Robin Fornazar
Henry Ascher
Ann Ekberg-Jansson
Gunnel Hensing
Published in International migration
Volume 55
Issue 2
Pages 80-96
ISSN 0020-7985
Publication year 2017
Published at Institute of Medicine, School of Public Health and Community Medicine
Pages 80-96
Language en
Keywords Migration Health inequalities Sweden Mental health Physical health
Subject categories Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology


To study health inequalities between native and immigrant Swedes, we investigated differences in self-rated health (SRH), mental wellbeing (MW), common symptoms (CS), and persistent illness (PI), and if socioeconomic status (SES), negative status inconsistency, or social support could account for such differences. A secondary analysis was conducted on questionnaire data from a random adult population sample of 4,023 individuals and register data from Statistics Sweden. χ2 tests and binary logistic regressions were used to identify health differences and study these after accounting for explanatory variables. Compared with natives, immigrants more commonly reported negative status inconsistency, poorer SES, and poorer social support as well as poor SRH, very poor MW, and high level of CS but not PI. Significant differences were accounted for by work-related factors and social support. We encourage future research to address how pre- and peri-migration factors relate to immigrants’ post-migration SES, social support, and health status.

Page Manager: Webmaster|Last update: 9/11/2012

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