Project III uses a longitudinal research design to analyze Mexican children of immigrants'access to and use of health care. The project will evaluate how immigrant documentation status creates health care access vulnerabilities and how institutional and sociopolitical contexts in new and traditional immigrant destination communities may reduce health care barriers. While nearly one-third (29%) of Mexican children lack health insurance and an estimated 16% do not get regular medical checkups, little is known about the effects on health care access and use of the immigration and settlement process or the legal status of parents and children. This study will address these research gaps using pooled longitudinal data from four nationally representative cohorts from the 1996, 2001, 2004 and 2008 panels ofthe SIPP merged with contextual data on public and school-based health facilities, economic conditions, and largely restrictive local area immigration-related laws and policies. Rates and types of insurance coverage, gaps in coverage over time (e.g., by year), and receipt of routine medical and dental care will be examined by race-ethnicity, nativity, and legal status, and across new versus traditional immigrant destination contexts. The proposed analysis will advance public health scholarship regarding multiple dimensions of new and traditional destination contexts that are related to health care access and utilization (i.e., health- and work-related institutional contexts, the immigrant receptivity context). Methodological innovations address several challenges inherent in the study of immigrant populations, including the development and validation of an algorithm to estimate immigrant documentation status;development of propensity scores for use in sensitivity tests for bias in model estimates due to selection into new/traditional destination communities and for use in creating emigration adjusted weights;and the multi-source measurement of immigrant receptivity """"""""climate,"""""""" including local area enacted immigration-related laws and policies and media-documented records of immigration-related community social actions.

Public Health Relevance

Child and human development experts agree that child health promotes healthy functioning in adulthood, through its role in child educational success and in future adult health. Equitable access to health care resources is important for reducing current rates of adult minority health disparities and to ensure a population of productive citizens for America's future.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
Research Program Projects (P01)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZHD1-DSR-W)
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
Pennsylvania State University
University Park
United States
Zip Code
Oropesa, R S; Landale, Nancy S; Hillemeier, Marianne M (2016) Legal Status and Health Care: Mexican-Origin Children in California, 2001-2014. Popul Res Policy Rev 35:651-684
Frisco, Michelle L; Quiros, Susana; Van Hook, Jennifer (2016) One Size May Not Fit All: How Obesity Among Mexican-Origin Youth Varies by Generation, Gender, and Age. Demography 53:2031-2043
Howe Hasanali, Stephanie; De Jong, Gordon F; Roempke Graefe, Deborah (2016) Hispanic-Asian Immigrant Inequality in Perceived Medical Need and Access to Regular Physician Care. J Immigr Minor Health 18:219-27
Landale, Nancy S; Oropesa, R S; Noah, Aggie J et al. (2016) Early cognitive skills of Mexican-origin children: The roles of parental nativity and legal status. Soc Sci Res 58:198-209
Van Hook, Jennifer; Quiros, Susana; Frisco, Michelle L et al. (2016) It is Hard to Swim Upstream: Dietary Acculturation Among Mexican-Origin Children. Popul Res Policy Rev 35:177-196
Dondero, Molly; Van Hook, Jennifer (2016) Generational status, neighborhood context, and mother-child resemblance in dietary quality in Mexican-origin families. Soc Sci Med 150:212-20
Howe Hasanali, Stephanie (2015) Immigrant-Native Disparities in Perceived and Actual Met/Unmet Need for Medical Care. J Immigr Minor Health 17:1337-46
Hillemeier, Marianne M; Landale, Nancy S; Oropesa, R S (2015) Asthma in US Mexican-Origin Children in Early Childhood: Differences in Risk and Protective Factors by Parental Nativity. Acad Pediatr 15:421-9
Oropesa, R S; Landale, Nancy S; Hillemeier, Marianne M (2015) Family legal status and health: Measurement dilemmas in studies of Mexican-origin children. Soc Sci Med 138:57-67
Van Hook, Jennifer; Bachmeier, James D; Coffman, Donna L et al. (2015) Can we spin straw into gold? An evaluation of immigrant legal status imputation approaches. Demography 52:329-54

Showing the most recent 10 out of 23 publications