Health and Migration Within and Across Borders: A Longitudinal Study of Mexican Internal Migrants and Return U.S. Migrants

Gabriela Leon-Perez

This paper investigates the relationship between migration and health across two migratory streams originating in the same country. Focusing on the case of Mexico, the goals are two-fold: The goals of this paper are two-fold: (1) identify health selection effects among internal and return US migrants compared to non-migrants, and (2) examine the effect of internal and international migration on health. Using longitudinal data from the Mexican Family Life Survey, I estimate linear growth curves to assess migrants’ and non-migrants’ initial health status and changes in health over time. The outcome is overall health, measured by self-rated health. Preliminary results reveal that the migration-health relationship operates differently based on destination. Return US migrants exhibited positive health selection relative to their non-migrant counterparts and experienced health deterioration after migration. Internal migrants, on the other hand, were not significantly different from non-migrants in initial health or changes in health over time.

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 Presented in Session 7. Migration & Urbanization