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Migrants' healthcare experience: a meta-ethnography review of the literature.

Luiking, Marie-Louise; Heckemann, Birgit; Ali, Parveen; Dekker-van Doorn, Connie; Ghosh, Sumana; Kydd, Angela; Watson, Roger; Patel, Harshida


Marie-Louise Luiking

Birgit Heckemann

Parveen Ali

Connie Dekker-van Doorn

Sumana Ghosh

Angela Kydd

Roger Watson

Harshida Patel


Purpose: Worldwide, more than 214 million people have left their country of origin. This unprecedented mass migration impacts on healthcare in host countries. This paper explores and synthesizes literature on the healthcare experiences of migrants. Design: A meta- ethnography study of qualitative studies was conducted. Methods: Eight databases (MEDLINE, CINAHL, PsychInfo, EMBASE, Web of Science, Migration Observatory, National Health Service Scotland Knowledge Network, and ASSIA) were searched for relevant full text articles in English, published between January 2006 and June 2016. Articles were screened against inclusion criteria for eligibility. Included articles were assessed for quality and analysed using Noblit and Hare's seven step meta ethnography process. Findings: Twenty-seven studies were included in the review. Five key contextualization dimensions were identified: Personal Factors, The Healthcare System, Accessing Healthcare, The Encounter and Healthcare Experiences. These five areas all underlined the uniqueness of each individual migrant emphasizing the need to treat a person rather than a population. Within a true person-centred approach, the individual's cultural background is fundamental to effective care. Conclusion: From the findings, a model has been designed using the five dimensions and grounded in a person-centred care approach. This may help healthcare providers to identify weak points, improve the organisation and healthcare professionals to provide person-centred care to migrant patients. Clinical relevance: The proposed model facilitates identification of points of weakness in the care for migrant patients. Employing a person-centred care approach may contribute to improve health outcomes for migrant patients.


LUIKING, M.-L., HECKEMANN, B., ALI, P., DEKKER-VAN DOORN, C., GHOSH, S., KYDD, A., WATSON, R. and PATEL, H. 2019. Migrants' healthcare experience: a meta-ethnography review of the literature. Journal of nursing scholarship [online], 51(1), pages 58-67. Available from:

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Aug 7, 2018
Online Publication Date Nov 2, 2018
Publication Date Jan 31, 2019
Deposit Date Aug 20, 2018
Publicly Available Date Nov 3, 2019
Journal Journal of nursing scholarship
Print ISSN 1527-6546
Electronic ISSN 1547-5069
Publisher Wiley
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 51
Issue 1
Pages 58-67
Keywords Health promotion; Health education; Health behaviours; Quality improvement; Quality of care; Quality of services; Cultural issues; Community health; Nurse patient relations; Ethnography; Research methods
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