Migración y Salud. Inmigrantes mexicanos en Estados Unidos: 10 años de perspectiva - page 105

This year the
Migration and Health
Report Series ce-
lebrates its tenth year in informing policymakers, re-
searchers, and thegeneral publicon importantmigrant
health issues in the US. Past reports have focused on
access to care, health insurance, health conditions,
occupational health and safety, women’s health, im-
migrant children and adolescent’s health, the use of
services, andhealth care reform, amongothers.
Over the past ten years, both public and priva-
te entities at the federal, state and local levels have
made a number of new policies designed to protect
thehealthof immigrant, Latinoandother underserved
communities. Most notably, the passage and imple-
mentation of the
Affordable Care Act
(aca) repre-
sentsamajor step towardsexpandingaccess tohealth
care. Subsidies for private insurance through the new
health benefit exchanges, expanded eligibility for pu-
blic insurance through
, and increased funding
for community health clinics, will significantly increase
affordable health insurance and access to services for
most previously uninsured legal immigrants. Despite
theseadvances, undocumented immigrants, themajo-
rityofwhomareMexicans,will continue to lackhealth
insurance, and new issues such as the migration of
unaccompaniedminors have surfaced asmajor health
andhuman rights issues.
TheMexican immigrant population is as impor-
tant today as itwas a decade ago. It has remained re-
latively stable in size over the past ten years at 4%of
the general population (11.8million people). TheUS-
born population withMexican ancestry, however, has
increased from16.6million in2004 to22.6million in
2013, foracombinedtotalof34.3millionpeople living
in theUSwhoareofMexicanorigin.Thegrowthof this
grouphas undeniably contributed to slowing the trend
of demographicagingof theUSpopulationasawhole.
TheMexicanoriginpopulationhas ayoungage struc-
ture, helping to counter the decrease in theworking
age population in the country. Also, over the past
decade, the places thatMexicanmigrants settle has
beenslowlyspreading throughout thewholeof theUS,
although it isstill heavilyconcentrated in theWestand
Southwestern statesofCaliforniaandTexas.
Chapter 1 presents general trends of the past
decade in immigration to the US, with an emphasis
on Mexican and Central Americans. It provides in-
formation on their demographic profile as well as
their workforce participation, income level and natu-
ralization status as indicators of social integration.
Naturalization rates are low and have not changed
significantly over the past 10 years. Although all of
the groups studied aremore likely to live inpoverty in
2013thantheywere in2004,Mexican immigrantsare
more likely to livewith low incomes, a fact explained
partially by the concentration ofMexican immigrant
workers in the low-wage services and industries such
asagricultureandconstruction. Andalthough the to-
tal undocumented population in the US has declined
slightlyover thepast ten years,Mexican immigrants
continue to account for over 50% of undocumen-
ted immigrants. All of these factors are interrelated
and are determinants of health and access to health
care, revealing thatMexican immigrants are in a vul-
nerable situation comparedwith other groups.
Chapter2analyzes thechangesover time in the
health insurance coverage and health service use of
the Mexican, Central American, and other immigrant
populations in the US compared to US-born popula-
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