New publication about health status of return migrants – University of Copenhagen

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27 October 2017

New publication about health status of return migrants

Line Neerup Handlos, PhD, has authored the article Role of disease and demographic factors as determinants of return migration: A nationwide register-based cohort study.
The authors elucidate how the incidence of disease and demographic characteristics is lacking for return migrants. Additionally the aim of the paper is to investigate - and contribute to a more general description of the role of disease and demographic factors.


Aims: A number of aspects of the health status of migrants who return to their country of origin have been explored in the literature; however, a more general description of the incidence of disease and demographic characteristics is lacking. The aim of this research was to contribute such a description.
Methods: A nationwide cohort study was conducted of 114,331 migrants who obtained residence in Denmark between 1 January 1993 and 31 December 2010. Demographic characteristics and ten disease groups were included as explanatory variables and hazards ratios for the association between return migration and disease incidence, as well as demographic characteristics, were estimated using Cox regressions.
Results: The tendency to return-migrate when ill was not the same among younger and elderly migrants; migrants <55 years of age had a significantly smaller propensity to return-migrate if they had suffered from a disease during the 18 years of follow-up compared with those who had not had a disease, whereas migrants ≥55 years of age were more prone to return if ill. The likelihood of returning decreased with increasing comorbidity in both age groups. Among those who were <55 years of age, the tendency to return increased with age at obtainment of residence; among those who were ≥55 years, more menthan women return-migrated.
Conclusions: In Denmark, younger migrants are less inclined to return-migrate if they are ill compared with healthy migrants, whereas elderly migrants are more inclined to return if ill. The returnees also differ demographically from non-returnees in various ways.

Key Words: Migration, morbidity, return migration, determinants, diseases, demography, registry

See full article at Scandinavian Journal of Public Health