, Volume 10, Issue 3, pp 247-254
Date: 10 Jan 2008

The Effect of Parental Immigration Authorization on Health Insurance Coverage for Migrant Latino Children

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Objective: To examine if immigration authorization among parents is associated with health insurance coverage for migrant Latino children. Data Source: A cross-sectional household survey of 300 migrant families for which one child, aged <13 years, was randomly selected. Results: Most children lacked insurance (73%) and had unauthorized parents (77%). Having an authorized parent or parental stay of more than 5 years in the US were each positively associated with children’s health insurance coverage [OR: 4.9; 95% CI: (2.7–8.7) and [OR = 6.7; 95% CI: (3.8–12.0), respectively]. The effect of parental authorization did not persist in multivariable logistic regression analysis; however, more than 5 years of parental stay in the US remained associated with children’s insurance coverage [OR = 4.8; 95% CI (1.8–12.2)], regardless of parental authorization. Conclusion: Increased parental familiarity with US health and/or social services agencies, rather than parental authorization status, is important to obtaining health insurance for migrant children. Efforts to insure eligible migrant children should focus on recently arrived families.