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Immigrant Children's Access to Health Care: Differences by Global Region of Birth


We use data from the National Health Interview Survey (2000-2006) to examine the social determinants of health insurance coverage and access to care for immigrant children by 10 global regions of birth. We find dramatic differences in the social and economic characteristics of immigrant children by region of birth. Children from Mexico and Latin America fare worse than immigrant children born in the U.S. with significantly lower incomes and little or no education. These social determinants, along with U.S. public health policies regarding new immigrants, create significant barriers to access to health insurance coverage, and increase delayed or foregone care. Uninsured immigrant children had 6.5 times higher odds of delayed care compared with insured immigrant children.