Beyond Geographic Connectivity: How Migration Flows Shape Overall Health Across U.S. Counties

Noli Brazil , University of California, Davis

A long line of research has demonstrated that the contextual features of a place are associated with the health of its residents. Juxtaposed against this body of evidence is the increased attention given to examining spatial patterns that help explain health inequalities. Although studies of spatial dependence have been invaluable in demonstrating the importance of examining contextual effects beyond the immediate community, restricting processes of influence to operate only among contiguous neighbors ignores processes of influence that are not spatially bounded. The present study analyzes one pathway connecting the health of communities both near and far: migration flows. Employing a combination of spatial regression and social network methods using data on 2011-2015 census county-to-county migration flows and health outcome and quality measures from the County Health Rankings (CHR), I examine the association between the health and social conditions of places connected via internal migration flows in the United States.

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 Presented in Session 235. Social Aspects of Place and Health