Explaining immigrant health service utilization: A theoretical framework




Yang, Philip Q.
Hwang, Shann Hwa

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Sage Open


Although there is no paucity of theoretical frameworks for explaining people’s health service utilization (HSU), theoretical frameworks designed to account for variations in immigrants’ HSU remain underdeveloped. Building on influential theories or models for explaining HSU and especially Andersen’s widely used health behavior model, this article proposes a theoretical framework for explaining disparities in immigrant HSU. The proposed framework explains disparities in immigrant HSU by the health care need, resources, and predisposing factors of immigrants, and macrostructural/contextual conditions at both the general and immigrant-specific levels, as well as the mediating relationships among some of these factors. It is believed that this new framework can offer a fuller understanding of the determination process of immigrant HSU.


Article originally published in SAGE Open, 6(2). English. Published Online 2016. https://doi.org/10.1177/2158244016648137
This article was published with the assistance of the Texas Woman's University Libraries Open Access Fund.


Health service utilization, Immigrant, Theoretical framework, Disparities


This is the publisher’s version of an article that is available at https://doi.org/10.1177/2158244016648137 . Recommended citation: Yang, P. Q., & Hwang, S. H. (2016). Explaining Immigrant Health Service Utilization. SAGE Open, 6(2), 215824401664813. This item has been deposited in accordance with publisher copyright and licensing terms and with the author’s permission.