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Return migration in the context of parental assistance in the AIDS epidemic: the Thai experience


  • Knodel, John
  • VanLandingham, Mark


Most persons with AIDS (PWAs) eventually require demanding caregiving. This can prompt changes in living arrangements during the course of the illness. Few studies have attempted to examine the potential links between AIDS and migration from this perspective. The present study uses both direct and indirect approaches to examine the extent of return migration of adults with AIDS in Thailand and explores how this is linked to residence with and care by older aged parents. Methodological challenges and various approaches to the study of this phenomenon are discussed. Despite differences in the nature of information available from our samples and in basic sample characteristics, the findings show a consistent pattern suggestive of extensive return migration among PWAs. The fact that most return migrants die within a few months of their return indicates that they are seeking parental caregiving during the final stages of the illness. The vast majority of PWAs who returned home after becoming ill did so because of their illness, particularly due to a need for care.

Suggested Citation

  • Knodel, John & VanLandingham, Mark, 2003. "Return migration in the context of parental assistance in the AIDS epidemic: the Thai experience," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 57(2), pages 327-342, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:57:y:2003:i:2:p:327-342

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    Cited by:

    1. Coast, Ernestina, 2006. "Local understandings of, and responses to, HIV: Rural-urban migrants in Tanzania," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 63(4), pages 1000-1010, August.
    2. Adebowale Will Akande, 2010. "A possible role of stigma and fears in HIV infection," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 22(5), pages 556-572.


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