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The effects of immigration on NHS waiting times

Osea Giuntella, Catia Nicodemo () and Carlos Vargas-Silva ()

Journal of Health Economics, 2018, vol. 58, issue C, 123-143

Abstract: This paper analyzes the effects of immigration on waiting times for the National Health Service (NHS) in England. Linking administrative records from Hospital Episode Statistics (2003–2012) with immigration data drawn from the UK Labour Force Survey, we find that immigration reduced waiting times for outpatient referrals and did not have significant effects on waiting times in accident and emergency departments (A&E) and elective care. The reduction in outpatient waiting times can be explained by the fact that immigration increases natives’ internal mobility and that immigrants tend to be healthier than natives who move to different areas. Finally, we find evidence that immigration increased waiting times for outpatient referrals in more deprived areas outside of London. The increase in average waiting times in more deprived areas is concentrated in the years immediately following the 2004 EU enlargement and disappears in the medium term (e.g., 3–4 years).

Keywords: Immigration; Waiting times; NHS; Access to health care; Welfare (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J61 I10 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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Related works:
Working Paper: The Effects of Immigration on NHS Waiting Times (2017) Downloads
Working Paper: The Effects of Immigration on NHS Waiting Times (2015) Downloads
Working Paper: The Effects of Immigration on NHS Waiting Times (2015) Downloads
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Journal of Health Economics is currently edited by J. P. Newhouse, A. J. Culyer, R. Frank, K. Claxton and T. McGuire

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