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Are migrants health policies aimed at improving access to quality healthcare? An analysis of Spanish policies

Author

Listed:
  • Vázquez, María Luisa
  • Terraza-Núñez, Rebeca
  • S-Hernández, Silvia
  • Vargas, Ingrid
  • Bosch, Lola
  • González, Andrea
  • Pequeño, Sandra
  • Cantos, Raquel
  • Martínez, Juan Ignacio
  • López, Luís Andrés

Abstract

Although until April 2012, all Spanish citizens regardless of their origin, residence status and work situation were entitled to health care, available evidence suggested inadequate access for immigrants. Following the Aday and Andersen model, we conducted an analysis of policy elements that affect immigrants’ access to health care in Spain, based on documentary analysis of national policies and selected regional policies related to migrant health care. Selected documents were (a) laws and plans in force at the time containing migrant health policies and (b) evaluations. The analysis included policy principles, objectives, strategies and evaluations. Results show that the national and regional policies analyzed are based on the principle that health care is a right granted to immigrants by law. These policies include strategies to facilitate access to health care, reducing barriers for entry to the system, for example simplifying requirements and raising awareness, but mostly they address the necessary qualities for services to be able to attend to a more diverse population, such as the adaptation of resources and programs, or improved communication and training. However, limited planning was identified in terms of their implementation, necessary resources and evaluation. In conclusion, the policies address relevant barriers of access for migrants and signal improvements in the health system's responsiveness, but reinforcement is required in order for them to be effectively implemented.

Suggested Citation

  • Vázquez, María Luisa & Terraza-Núñez, Rebeca & S-Hernández, Silvia & Vargas, Ingrid & Bosch, Lola & González, Andrea & Pequeño, Sandra & Cantos, Raquel & Martínez, Juan Ignacio & López, Luís Andrés, 2013. "Are migrants health policies aimed at improving access to quality healthcare? An analysis of Spanish policies," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 113(3), pages 236-246.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:hepoli:v:113:y:2013:i:3:p:236-246
    DOI: 10.1016/j.healthpol.2013.06.007
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Mladovsky, Philipa & Rechel, Bernd & Ingleby, David & McKee, Martin, 2012. "Responding to diversity: An exploratory study of migrant health policies in Europe," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 105(1), pages 1-9.
    2. Vázquez, María-Luisa & Terraza-Núñez, Rebeca & Vargas, Ingrid & Rodríguez, Dolors & Lizana, Tona, 2011. "Health policies for migrant populations in three European countries: England; Italy and Spain," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 101(1), pages 70-78, June.
    3. Rebeca Terraza-Núñez & Diana Toledo & Ingrid Vargas & M. Vázquez, 2010. "Perception of the Ecuadorian population living in Barcelona regarding access to health services," International Journal of Public Health, Springer;Swiss School of Public Health (SSPH+), vol. 55(5), pages 381-390, October.
    4. Cathy Zimmerman & Ligia Kiss & Mazeda Hossain, 2011. "Migration and Health: A Framework for 21st Century Policy-Making," Working Papers id:4174, eSocialSciences.
    5. Rebeca Terraza-Núñez & M. Vázquez & Ingrid Vargas & Tona Lizana, 2011. "Health professional perceptions regarding healthcare provision to immigrants in Catalonia," International Journal of Public Health, Springer;Swiss School of Public Health (SSPH+), vol. 56(5), pages 549-557, October.
    6. Mladovsky, Philipa, 2009. "A framework for analysing migrant health policies in Europe," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 93(1), pages 55-63, November.
    7. ., 1998. "Dewey, John," Chapters,in: The Handbook of Economic Methodology, chapter 22 Edward Elgar Publishing.
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    Cited by:

    1. Cimas, Marta & Gullon, Pedro & Aguilera, Eva & Meyer, Stefan & Freire, José Manuel & Perez-Gomez, Beatriz, 2016. "Healthcare coverage for undocumented migrants in Spain: Regional differences after Royal Decree Law 16/2012," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 120(4), pages 384-395.
    2. Vázquez, María-Luisa & Vargas, Ingrid & Jaramillo, Daniel López & Porthé, Victoria & López-Fernández, Luis Andrés & Vargas, Hernán & Bosch, Lola & Hernández, Silvia S. & Azarola, Ainhoa Ruiz, 2016. "Was access to health care easy for immigrants in Spain? The perspectives of health personnel in Catalonia and Andalusia," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 120(4), pages 396-405.

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