Immigration and Health Care Reform

This fact sheet from the Immigration Policy Center indicates that immigrants WILL NOT be a drain on our health care system if the Obama plan to overhaul health insurance passes. In fact, the brief points out that U.S. citizen make up the majority (78%) of the uninsured, and as a rule, immigrants incur fewer health care costs than citizens. The reason for this is that they are younger and in better health, but they are also less likely to use emergency room care:

A 2006 study in Health Affairs found that communities with high rates of emergency room usage tend to have relatively small noncitizen populations. Cities with large immigrant populations (such as Miami-Dade County, Florida, and Phoenix, Arizona) have much lower rates of emergency room use than areas with small immigrant populations (such as Cleveland).

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