Immigration and the Health Care System: An Institutional Analysis

Award Year:
Alejandro Portes
Immigrant Health
Approximately one in nine U.S. residents is now foreign born, and both immigrants and their children are significantly more likely to be uninsured than the native population. Health care facilities face challenges in coping with rapidly growing numbers of diverse immigrant patients who are poor, uninsured, and often unable to speak English. Alejandro Portes, Ph.D. examines how well health care organizations are meeting the needs of immigrant patients, and what accounts for performance differences. His project, Immigration and the Health Care System: An Institutional Analysis, focuses on 45 hospitals, community clinics, and health care centers in Miami, San Diego, and the Trenton-New Brunswick corridor in New Jersey to evaluate their capacity to cope with uninsured immigrants and overcome barriers to effective care. Dr. Portes' results should inform policy efforts to address the health needs of immigrants and help ensure that health care organizations respond effectively to an increasingly diverse society.