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Healthy or unhealthy migrants?: Identifying internal migration effects on mortality in Africa using health and demographic surveillance systems of the INDEPTH network
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2016 (English)In: Social Science and Medicine, ISSN 0277-9536, E-ISSN 1873-5347, Vol. 164, 59-73 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Migration has been hypothesised to be selective on health but this healthy migrant hypothesis has generally been tested at destinations, and for only one type of flow, from deprived to better-off areas. The circulatory nature of migration is rarely accounted for. This study examines the relationship between different types of internal migration and adult mortality in Health and Demographic Surveillance System (HDSS) populations in West, East, and Southern Africa, and asks how the processes of selection, adaptation and propagation explain the migration-mortality relationship experienced in these contexts. The paper uses longitudinal data representing approximately 900 000 adults living in nine sub-Saharan African HDSS sites of the INDEPTH Network. Event History Analysis techniques are employed to examine the relationship between all-cause mortality and migration status, over periods ranging from 3 to 14 years for a total of nearly 4.5 million person-years. The study confirms the importance of migration in explaining variation in mortality, and the diversity of the migration-mortality relationship over a range of rural and urban local areas in the three African regions. The results confirm that the pattern of migration-mortality relationship is not exclusively explained by selection but also by propagation and adaptation. Consequences for public health policy are drawn. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 164, 59-73 p.
Keyword [en]
Internal migration, Sub-Saharan Africa, Mortality, Health and demographic surveillance system
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-126298DOI: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2016.06.035ISI: 000382349200008PubMedID: 27471131OAI: diva2:1044612
Available from: 2016-11-04 Created: 2016-10-03 Last updated: 2016-11-04Bibliographically approved

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Collinson, Mark A.
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Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine
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