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Table 1 Summary of findings

From: Inequalities in health care utilization among migrants and non-migrants in Germany: a systematic review

Sector of health care No. of studies [references] Inequality (trend) Description of trend
Outpatient care (unspecific) 5 [17,18,19,20,21] + ▪ Higher probability of utilization especially among migrant children and adolescents.
Outpatient care (general practitioner or paediatrician) 5 [22,23,24,25,26] O ▪ No striking differences, but lower probability of utilization among migrant children and adolescents. ▪ Higher utilization among 1st generation migrants.
Outpatient care (specialists) 14 [22, 23, 25,26,27,28,29,30,31,32,33,34,35,36] ▪ Lower frequency and probability of utilization especially among 1st generation migrants. ▪ Inequality varies with the type of specialist.
Inpatient care 10 [17, 18, 23, 25, 26, 29, 30, 37,38,39] O ▪ Inconsistent results, differences in terms of type of disease.
Emergency care 3 [26, 40, 41] O ▪ Inconsistent results: Higher probability of utilization among migrant adults, but no difference among children and adolescents.
Rehabilitation 4 [26, 42,43,44] ▪ Results tend to lower usage among migrants. ▪ Two multivariate analyses indicate lower probability of utilization among people with migrant background.
Therapists and counselling services 8 [22, 26, 28, 45,46,47,48,49] ▪ Lower probability of utilization among 1st generation migrants (physical therapy) and migrant children of lower age groups (physical and occupational therapy). ▪ In terms of (psychosocial) counselling slightly higher frequency of uptake among natives, but no differences in the probability for cancer survivors.
Medication and complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) 13 [24, 26, 50,51,52,53,54,55,56,57,58,59] ▪ Lower frequency and probability of utilization among people with migrant background, especially for CAM and in case of self-medication (e.g. over-the-counter drugs). ▪ Unclear pattern in terms of prescribed drugs, but trend to higher use among migrants.
Early detection (cancer) 7 [17, 26, 60,61,62,63,64] ▪ Lower frequency and probability of participation especially among migrant women and migrants of the 1st generation or with two-sided background (any cancer sites).
Early detection (children) 5 [25, 65,66,67,68] ▪ Consistently lower frequency and probability of participation in the preventive health care program for children with migrant background.
Vaccination 13 [41, 61, 66, 67, 69,70,71,72,73,74,75,76,77] O ▪ Inequality varies with the type of vaccination. ▪ In some cases, lower frequency and probability of utilization notably among 1st generation migrants, in other cases, lower uptake among natives.
General health check-up 2 [26, 61] ▪ Lower frequency of utilization among migrants, but small number of studies.
Oral health check-up 7 [24, 26, 27, 58, 61, 78, 79] ▪ Lower frequency and probability of utilization in all age groups of migrants.
  1. + = Higher frequency and/or probability of utilization among people with migration background
  2. – = Lower frequency and/or probability of utilization among people with migration background
  3. O = No consistent pattern/no difference