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Migrant health: putting the economic argument into the context of deservingness debates.

Gottlieb N, Davidovitch N
European Journal of Public Health, Volume 27, Issue 4

The main arguments for improving access to health care for marginalised groups, including migrants and ethnic minorities, have mostly been based on public health considerations, human rights claims and ethical principles of equity. However, the respective political debates often focus on economic arguments such as moral hazard, (presumed) health expenses, and the need to safeguard scarce resources. Acknowledging the role of economic arguments in political decision-making processes, researchers and activists have begun to pay more attention to the fiscal implications of limiting migrants’ access to care. As yet, however, empirical evidence on the economic implications of different policy responses to migration is scarce. As pointed out by Trummer and Krasnik,1 the ‘right to health care is acknowledged in many international declarations—however… only a few countries have adopted national policies...

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