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Healthy Migrants? Health Selection of Internal Migrants in Germany

: Westphal, C.


European journal of population 32 (2016), No.5, pp.703–730
ISSN: 0168-6577 (print)
ISSN: 1572-9885 (online)
Journal Article
Fraunhofer IZI ()

In Germany, internal migration streams have shaped the population structure quite notably during the past two decades. As selective migration can have a substantial impact on the geographical distribution of health, this paper examines whether internal migrants in Germany are selected regarding their health status. To capture health selection, one measureâi.e. self-rated contentment with healthâand two established risk factors for poor healthâi.e. smoking and BMIâwere included. Applying event history analysis, the health status of migrants was compared to non-migrants, controlling for other individual characteristics. The analyses were based on the German Socio-Economic Panel, a retrospective data set representative of the German population. Results for self-rated health and smoking were inconclusive. While self-rated health was only related to migration in men, smoking was only linked to migration in women.