IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Immigrants from Chernobyl-affected areas in Israel: the link between health and social adjustment


  • Remennick, L. I.


The concept of cumulative adversity is a useful tool in the study of migration under chronic stress from past traumas. Drawing on this concept, the study explored long-term health and psychosocial effects of past radiation exposure among survivors of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster who immigrated to Israel during the 1990s. Self-rated health status and indicators of social adjustment were compared in two groups of Russian immigrants: 180 persons from Chernobyl-affected areas and 200 immigrants from other areas of the former USSR. The semi-structured questionnaire was administered by Russian-speaking sociology students and analyzed by both quantitative and qualitative methods. In line with earlier research, both the somatic and mental health of Chernobyl survivors were significantly worse than in other immigrants of the same gender and age; a significant share of reported health problems were probably psychosomatic. Depression, sense of stigma and cancer-related anxiety were more prevalent in the study group. Immigrants from contaminated areas tended to use more health services (both conventional and alternative), but were less satisfied with their quality and providers' attitude. The link between perceived health impairment and poorer social accommodation in the host country has been confirmed: Chernobyl-area immigrants experienced more severe occupational downgrading and were more disappointed with the results of their resettlement than other immigrants.

Suggested Citation

  • Remennick, L. I., 2002. "Immigrants from Chernobyl-affected areas in Israel: the link between health and social adjustment," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 309-317, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:54:y:2002:i:2:p:309-317

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Felix Richter & Malte Steenbeck & Markus Wilhelm, 2013. "Nuclear Accidents and Policy: Notes on Public Perception," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 590, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    2. Danzer, Alexander M. & Danzer, Natalia, 2011. "The Long-Term Effects of the Chernobyl Catastrophe on Subjective Well-Being and Mental Health," IZA Discussion Papers 5906, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:54:y:2002:i:2:p:309-317. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.