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Illegal Alien Status and Family Health

  • By: Jeffrey Todd Kullgren
  • In: Encyclopedia of Family Health
  • Edited by: Martha Craft-Rosenberg & Shelley-Rae Pehler
  • Subject:Family Health, Family Policy, Family Law

Illegal alien families represent one of the most politically contentious subgroups in the United States. Some observers argue these families are a vulnerable population whose access to health care is not only humane but also integral to protecting the larger public health, while others claim that the availability of health care and social services for this group encourages illegal immigration. The purpose of this discussion is to describe the characteristics of illegal alien families, identify unique threats to their health and health care, and discuss interventions to address their health care needs.

Definitions and Characteristics of Illegal Alien Families

Illegal aliens (also known as undocumented immigrants) are defined as individuals born in another country who live in the United States after either crossing the border undetected and ...

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