Does Health Selection Vary by Education Level for Asian Immigrants in the United States? Evidences from New Immigrant Survey and National Health Interview Survey

Ying-Ting Wang, University of Texas at Austin

Using the New Immigrant Survey and the National Health Interview Survey, this paper examines whether Asian immigrants in the United States, especially those who are less-educated, are selected on positive health compared to non-migrants in their sending countries and to their U.S.-born counterparts. If positive health selection is most prevalent for less educated Asian immigrants, it can help to explain why Asian immigrants in the U.S. have a weaker education gradient in health. Results show that most Asian immigrants are healthier compared to people in their home countries and to their U.S.-born counterparts. More-educated immigrants are more likely to have better health than people in their sending countries. Yet, the effect of nativity on health does not significantly differ by education level. Other possible reasons for the weaker education gradient in health for Asian immigrants are acculturation, different education and health relationship in sending countries and lower returns to education.

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Presented in Poster Session 2