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Migration and health

Guest Editors:
Florian Fischer: Institute of Public Health Charité, Germany
Shira Goldenberg: School of Public Health, San Diego State University, USA
Chengchao Zhou: School of Public Health, Shandong University, China

BMC Public Health welcomed submissions to our Collection on Migration and health.  Migrants are often vulnerable individuals, often coming from communities affected by war, conflict or economic crises and undertaking long and perilous journeys that increase their risks for diseases. They may also face hardships such as language barriers, lack of knowledge about health services, loss of social status, discrimination and marginalization. With migration an international issue affecting every country in the world and increasingly on the rise, there is an urgent need to engage with this global phenomenon at all levels in order to support progress towards health and development targets.

Meet the Guest Editors

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Florian Fischer: Institute of Public Health, Charité; Bavarian Research Center for Digital Health and Social Care, Kempten University of Applied Sciences, Germany

Dr Florian Fischer is an expert in issues related to public health, global health, and digital health. He focuses on evidence-based public health and megatrends in the context of health and care. His research experience relates to various settings and population groups, with specific emphasis on vulnerability and social determinants of health. Originally, he was trained as a paramedic. He has been engaged on various research activities related to the health of migrants and refugees.

Shira Goldenberg: School of Public Health, San Diego State University, USA

Dr Shira Goldenberg is a social epidemiologist and mixed-methods researcher whose work focuses on sexual and reproductive health, HIV, substance use, and syndemic health issues among migrant women and other marginalized populations. She is the Principal Investigator of several NIH and Canadian-funded epidemiological and mixed methods studies which aim to understand and develop strategies to address “upstream” social and structural drivers of sexual and reproductive health, HIV, and substance-related inequities amongst sex workers and migrant women. Dr Goldenberg’s research involves strong community collaborations and a deep commitment to community and policy-engaged knowledge translation.

Chengchao Zhou: School of Public Health, Shandong University, China

Dr Chengchao Zhou is a professor at School of Public Health, Shandong University, with 18 years of experience in health service research among internal migrants in China. He has published 97 papers in international journals on this subject as first or corresponding author.


About the collection

BMC Public Health welcomed for submissions to our Collection on Migration and Health. 

With migration an international issue affecting every country in the world and increasingly on the rise, there is an urgent need to engage with this global phenomenon at all levels in order to support progress towards health and development targets. The health of these populations may be affected in their own countries of origin, during their journeys, whether voluntary or forced, or in their destination countries. Migrants are often vulnerable individuals, often coming from communities affected by war, conflict or economic crises and undertaking long and perilous journeys that increase their risks for diseases. They may also face hardships such as language barriers, lack of knowledge about health services, loss of social status, discrimination and marginalization.

Understanding the links between migration and health is important in order to improve policy planning and towards achieving target 3.8 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) - namely, to achieve universal health coverage, including financial risk protection, access to quality essential health-care services and access to safe, effective, quality and affordable essential medicines and vaccines for all. Furthermore, effective migration governance is vital for safer migration, which is a crucial factor to achieving SDG10; a target which aims to ensure the facilitation of orderly, safe, regular and responsible migration and mobility of people, including through the implementation of planned and well- managed migration policies. 

BMC Public Health has launched this collection to bring together research looking at the exposure of refugees and migrants to the health risks associated with population movements and improving the health of migrants. We welcomed submissions including but not limited to migration and:

  • infectious diseases
  • sexual and reproductive health
  • non-communicable diseases
  • health care access

Image credit: pixabay

  1. Being older and having a migrant feature might cause a double risk of vulnerability in poor economic, social support, and health status at the place of destination. This study examines the association of migra...

    Authors: Vasim Ahamad, Ram Babu Bhagat, Manisha and Sanjay Kumar Pal
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:1843
  2. Although Türkiye (Turkey) hosts the largest number of Syrian refugees, studies on food insecurity are limited. This study examined the prevalence and risk factors of food insecurity among Syrian refugees livin...

    Authors: Kübra Esin, Tülay Işık, Feride Ayyıldız, Mustafa Koc and Hassan Vatanparast
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:1748
  3. Human trafficking is a human rights violation and urgent public health challenge. It involves the exploitation of a person by means of force, intimidation or deceit and causes severe health risks. Though it oc...

    Authors: Estella Alejandra Tambini Stollwerck, Ivo Rollmann, Hans-Christoph Friederich and Christoph Nikendei
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:1685
  4. This study investigated the effect of an intervention based on the theory of planned behavior on sexual function and satisfaction of migrant women during menopause in Iran.

    Authors: Maryam Mohammadi, Nooshin Peyman, Mohadese Hossainabadi, Vahid Ghavami and Hadi Tehrani
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:1626
  5. Forced displacement is a significant issue globally, and it affected 112 million people in 2022. Many of these people have found refuge in low- and middle-income countries. Migrants and refugees face complex a...

    Authors: Alina Ioana Forray, Ovidiu Oltean, Saskia Hanft-Robert, Rowan Madzamba, Andrian Liem, Barbara Schouten, Christine Anthonissen, Leslie Swartz, Răzvan Mircea Cherecheș, Sanna Higgen, Brian J. Hall and Mike Mösko
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:1593
  6. As the number of elderly migrants in China continues to grow, it is necessary to pay closer attention to their health and health services. Some studies have confirmed that social capital plays a significant ro...

    Authors: Qi Luo, Xiaolei Chen, Linlin Zhao, Qinghua Hu, Juan Du and Shuang Shao
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:1252
  7. In Bangladesh, remittances constitute a substantial portion of the country’s foreign exchange earnings and serve as a primary source of income. However, a considerable number of Bangladeshi citizens reside ove...

    Authors: Md. Salman Sohel, Md. Khaled Sifullah, Babul Hossain, Md. Fouad Hossain Sarker, Noshin Tasnim Zaman and Md. Obaidullah
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:1261
  8. The ongoing global migration has led to multicultural societies, with many migrants who do not speak the official language in the host country. This could contribute to communication problems with staff in hea...

    Authors: Lisa Hultin, Ulrika Pöder, Mariann Hedström, Anna Ekman and Katarina Hjelm
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:1257
  9. The existing literature evaluating the association between neonatal morbidity and migrant status presents contradictory results. The purpose of this study was to compare the risk of preterm birth (PTB) and low...

    Authors: Lulu Xie, Zhijiang Liang, Xionghu Wang and Xianqiong Luo
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:1179
  10. For students to feel happy and supported in school, it is important that their views are taken seriously and integrated into school policies. However, limited information is available how the voices of immigra...

    Authors: Maritta Välimäki, Kirsi Hipp, Faye Acton, Angelika Echsel, Ioan-Alexandru Grădinaru, Katrin Hahn-Laudenberg, Christina Schulze, Elisabeth Stefanek, Georg Spiel and Niamh O’Brien
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:1083
  11. This article is a continuation of the Musafir study published in 2020. Following the results of this study, we designed an educational website with Urdu-speaking volunteers, using a participatory approach. Thi...

    Authors: Sabah Jaroof and Johann Cailhol
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:1075
  12. The last decade saw the emergence of a new significant migration corridor due to the mass migration of Venezuelans to neighboring countries in South America. Since 2018, Brazil became the third host country of...

    Authors: Maria do Carmo Leal, Thaiza Dutra Gomes de Carvalho, Yammê Ramos Portella Santos, Rita Suely Bacuri de Queiroz, Paula Andrea Morelli Fonseca, Celia Landmann Szwarcwald and Pía Riggirozzi
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:1051
  13. International development work involves external partners bringing expertise, resources, and management for local interventions in LMICs, but there is often a gap in understandings of relevant local shared val...

    Authors: Annabel J. Chapman, Chike C. Ebido, Rahel Neh Tening, Yanyan Huang, Ndèye Marème Sougou, Risatianti Kolopaking, Amadou H. Diallo, Rita Anggorowati, Fatou B. Dial, Jessica Massonnié, Mahsa Firoozmand, Cheikh El Hadji Abdoulaye Niang and Marie K. Harder
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:987
  14. Migrants face several barriers when accessing care and tend to rely on emergency services to a greater extent than primary care. Comparing emergency department (ED) utilization by migrants and non-migrants can...

    Authors: Giulia Acquadro-Pacera, Martina Valente, Giulia Facci, Bereket Molla Kiros, Francesco Della Corte, Francesco Barone-Adesi, Luca Ragazzoni and Monica Trentin
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:963
  15. Individuals with a migrant background often underutilize physical rehabilitation services (PRS) compared to the host population. This disparity is attributed to various barriers, including limited access to in...

    Authors: Elaheh Amini, Manal Etemadi, Saeed Shahabi, Cornelia Anne Barth, Farzaneh Honarmandi, Marzieh Karami Rad and Kamran Bagheri Lankarani
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:893
  16. Immigrants are exposed to numerous risk factors that may contribute to the development of chronic musculoskeletal pain. Recent political and environmental crises in North Africa and the Middle East have led to...

    Authors: Maria-Nefeli Tsetseri, David J. Keene, Alan J. Silman and Stephanie G. Dakin
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:769
  17. Little attention has been given to the risk of high-risk human papillomavirus (hr-HPV) infection and cervical precancerous lesions among female migrant head porters (kayayei) in Ghana, as a vulnerable group, and ...

    Authors: Ethel Tekpor, Kofi Effah, Jerry Sifa, Joseph Emmanuel Amuah, Nana Owusu Mensah Essel, Seyram Kemawor, Comfort Mawusi Wormenor, Edna Sesenu, Stephen Danyo and Patrick Kafui Akakpo
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:659
  18. Migration is common among transgender women (TGW), often driven by the desire to escape stigma, find acceptance, establish new connections, access body modifications, or enter new avenues of sex work. Given th...

    Authors: Beo Oliveira Leite, Laio Magno, Francisco Inacio Bastos and Ines Dourado
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:589
  19. Migrants and refugees face unprecedented inequalities in accessing sexual and reproductive health (SRH) in developed and developing countries. Most attention has focused on the rich world perspective, while th...

    Authors: Tadele Dana Darebo, Mark Spigt, Berhanetsehay Teklewold, Abebe Sorsa Badacho, Niklas Mayer and Meba Teklewold
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:520
  20. The number of migrants and asylum seekers at the Mexico-US border has increased to historic levels. Our objective was to determine the medical diagnoses and treatments of migrating people seeking care in human...

    Authors: Christopher W. Reynolds, Allison W. Cheung, Sarah Draugelis, Samuel Bishop, Amir M. Mohareb, Ernesto Miguel Merino Almaguer, Yadira Benitez López, Lestter Enjamio Guerra, Raymond Rosenbloom, Joanna Hua, Callie VanWinkle, Pratik Vadlamudi, Vikas Kotagal and Florian Schmitzberger
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:489
  21. South Africa (SA) has one of the highest rates of migration on the continent, largely comprised of men seeking labor opportunities in urban centers. Migrant men are at risk for challenges engaging in HIV care....

    Authors: Maria Francesca Nardell, Caroline Govathson, Sithabile Mngadi-Ncube, Nkosinathi Ngcobo, Daniel Letswalo, Mark Lurie, Jacqui Miot, Lawrence Long, Ingrid Theresa Katz and Sophie Pascoe
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:435
  22. Chile has become a destination country for immigrants from Latin America, including youth. Guaranteeing access and use of sexual and reproductive health services for young migrants is crucial because of their ...

    Authors: Alexandra Obach, Alice Blukacz, Michelle Sadler, Alejandra Carreño Calderón, Báltica Cabieses and Carolina Díaz
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:386
  23. Although being a woman and having a migration background are strong predictors of poor self-rated health among (older) adults, research on the sex difference in self-rated health among (older) migrants remains...

    Authors: Lena D. Sialino, H. A.H. Wijnhoven, S. H. van Oostrom, H. S.J. Picavet, M. Visser and L. A. Schaap
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:248
  24. Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are major global public health issues. Migrants represent a vulnerable group that faces multiple barriers to access to he...

    Authors: Ali Al-kassab-Córdova, Carolina Mendez-Guerra, Pamela Robles-Valcarcel, Guido Bendezu-Quispe and Vicente A. Benites-Zapata
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:210
  25. The interplay of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) knowledge and self-perception of risk for HIV among people who inject drugs is complex and understudied, especially among temporary migrant workers who injec...

    Authors: Casey Morgan Luc, Judith Levy, Mahbat Bahromov, Jonbek Jonbekov and Mary E. Mackesy-Amiti
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:156
  26. Health and adequate access to health care are human rights. Refugees are at risk for substance abuse. Despite the known structural and personal risk factors for abuse, refugees in Germany continue to face barr...

    Authors: Panagiotis Stylianopoulos, Laura Hertner, Andreas Heinz, Ulrike Kluge, Ingo Schäfer and Simone Penka
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2024 24:30
  27. Self-care strategies can improve mental health and wellbeing, however, the evidence on preferred strategies among Arabic-speaking refugees and migrants is unclear. This mixed methods systematic review aimed to...

    Authors: Deena Mehjabeen, Ilse Blignault, Perjan Hashim Taha, Nicola Reavley and Shameran Slewa-Younan
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:2544
  28. International migrant families may face various barriers in the access and use of health services. Evidence on immigrant children’s health care or prevention facilities’ utilisation patterns is scarce in Portu...

    Authors: Zélia Muggli, Thierry E. Mertens, Regina Amado, Dora Vaz, Helena Loureiro and Maria Rosário O. Martins
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:2531
  29. There is a paucity of knowledge about the healthcare attitudes and practices of French-speaking immigrants originating from Sub-Saharan Africa (FISSA) living in minority settings. The purpose of this study was...

    Authors: Rémi Vincent, Kongnon Sangué Coulibaly, Ali Ahmed, Youssef Ahmed, Taylor A. Hanna, Srilata Ravi, Michael T. Hawkes and Sedami Gnidehou
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:2456
  30. To develop effective public health policies, programs, and services tailored to the unique sexual health needs of migrant populations, it is essential to understand the myriad socio-ecological factors that inf...

    Authors: Rusty Souleymanov, Bolaji Akinyele-Akanbi, Chinyere Njeze, Patricia Ukoli, Paula Migliardi, John Kim, Michael Payne, Laurie Ringaert, Gayle Restall, Linda Larcombe, Nathan Lachowsky, Mohammad Nuruzzaman Khan, Robert Lorway and Fritz Pino
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:2438
  31. Accurate information is essential so that HIV infection can be detected in time for initiation of HIV/AIDS treatment. Immigrants are at high risk for delayed HIV testing and diagnosis, but foreign residents in...

    Authors: Shiho Nagai, Teruyo Kitahara, Katsuyuki Kito and Masahito Hitosugi
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:2379
  32. Mounting evidence is revealing disparities in cognitive function and heightened dementia risk among refugees, yet research in this area remains scant. Despite bearing most of the world’s refugee burden, limite...

    Authors: Lana Bridi, Dahlia A. Kaki, Rawnaq Behnam, Xara Khan, Behnan Albahsahli, Nissma Bencheikh, Raghad Aljenabi, Nargis Ahmadi, Rana Dajani and Tala Al-Rousan
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:2307
  33. The present study examined Afghan asylum seekers’ and refugees’ self-perceived problems, and their experiences of treatment with an adapted version of the brief transdiagnostic psychological intervention “Prob...

    Authors: Viktoria Kantor, Dina Weindl, Jennifer Schiess-Jokanovic, Lucia Verginer, Brigitte Lueger-Schuster and Matthias Knefel
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:2157
  34. Universal social medical insurance coverage is viewed as a major factor in promoting social integration, but insufficient evidence exists on the integration of elderly rural migrants (ERM), generally aged 60 y...

    Authors: Xiaojie Ma, Wenjia Feng, Chaojun Shi, Yifan Wang, Qianqian Gao, Weiqin Cai, Hongqing An, Qi Jing, Runguo Gao and Anning Ma
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:2108
  35. Increasing employment and immigration have been proposed as possible solutions to tackle the problem of the labour force shortage in aging societies. Ensuring sufficient health and work ability among migrants ...

    Authors: Waseem Haider and Laura Salonen
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:1977
  36. In 2010, a political and social crisis pushed thousands of Venezuelans out of their country; today, seven million Venezuelans live abroad. In addition, during the COVID-19 pandemic, border closure increased an...

    Authors: Teresita Rocha-Jimenez, Carla Olivari, Alejandra Martínez, Michael Knipper and Báltica Cabieses
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:1846
  37. Brazil is the destination of many international migrants and refugees and, given the circumstances of their entry into the country, many face difficulties due to the absence of targeted policies. Thus, the obj...

    Authors: Heriederson Sávio Dias Moura, Thaís Zamboni Berra, Rander Junior Rosa, Ruan Víctor dos Santos Silva, Débora de Almeida Soares, Juliana Soares Tenório de Araújo, Fernanda Bruzadelli Paulino Costa, Rosa Maria Pinheiro de Souza, Murilo César do Nascimento, Titilade Kehinde Ayandeyi Teibo, Maria Del Pilar Serrano-Gallardo and Ricardo Alexandre Arcêncio
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:1728
  38. Despite the importance of baseline health data for evidence-informed decision-making, these data are rarely available for displaced populations. At the height of the European refugee crisis, most of those seek...

    Authors: Sarah Elizabeth Scales, Jee Won Park, Rebecca Nixon, Debarati Guha-Sapir and Jennifer A. Horney
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:1715
  39. Green exercise (physical activity in presence of nature) has beneficial effects for health and wellbeing. Green exercise is a popular form of recreation in the Nordic countries, but participation is lower amon...

    Authors: Giovanna Calogiuri, Evi Petersen, Alessio Rossi and Laura Terragni
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:1514
  40. Global migration continues to rise at unprecedented rates. Migrants are an extremely heterogeneous group and face diverse health needs related to infectious diseases, sexual and reproductive health, non-commun...

    Authors: Shira M Goldenberg and Florian Fischer
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:1425
  41. Intimate partner violence is a universally occurring form of violence against women which is perpetrated by a husband or other intimate partner. It is a common public health problem during humanitarian crisis....

    Authors: Filmawit Hadush, Dereje Tsegaye, Sherif Abdulwehab Legass, Endegena Abebe and Sabit Zenu
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:1418
  42. Refugees and asylum seekers have a high prevalence of psychiatric disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and depression. The postmigration context inheres different risk and protecti...

    Authors: Anna Christina Nowak, Niklas Nutsch, Tessa-Maria Brake, Lea-Marie Gehrlein and Oliver Razum
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:1289
  43. China has implemented Basic Public Health Service (BPHS) in 2009, aiming to improve the health status of the people, and the content of service includes implying health education for residents. As an important...

    Authors: Yue Che, Jun Wang, Chao Song, Xueyao Wang, Yang Bai and Jue Liu
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:1256
  44. Immigrant women’s challenges in realizing sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) are exacerbated by the lack of knowledge regarding how to tailor post-partum contraceptive services to their needs. Th...

    Authors: Helena Kilander, Rachael Sorcher, Sofia Berglundh, Kerstin Petersson, Anna Wängborg, Kristina Gemzell- Danielsson, Karin Emtell Iwarsson, Gunnar Brandén, Johan Thor and Elin C. Larsson
    Citation: BMC Public Health 2023 23:806