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Types of Migration
Internal Migration
Global Labour Mobility
Child Migration
Skilled Migration
Forced Migration
Return Migration

Key Themes
Modelling Causes
and Consequences
Links between Migrations
Rural Poverty and Livelihoods
Social Protection
Gender and Generations
Health and Education

UK / international
Albania / Eastern Europe
Ghana / Africa
Egypt / the Middle East
Bangladesh and
South Asia




Project 2a
West African Migrants' Investments in Health Insurance

Most accounts of the effects of migration on health emphasise the negative effects that the loss of skilled medical personnel has on the finance and functioning of health services in sending countries. However, there is some evidence that migrants may also contribute to improved health outcomes through investment in private and public health schemes that benefit their home communities. This project is an exploratory study of a new form of insurance scheme that has been set up in France, in which migrants from Cote d’Ivoire pay contributions for health insurance for their relatives back home. The Metropolitan Insurance Company Ghana Ltd has launched a similar scheme for Ghanaians in the UK.

The project will examine these two schemes and look at whether they affect who gets health care, and the quality of health care offered to different members of the community. The project will also look at the ways in which international migrants invest in public facilities such as health centres in their home communities in Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire. It will consider whether there is an information gap between the expressed needs of these communities and the needs as perceived by the migrants abroad, as well as whether there may be other motives for these investments.

Key Research Questions

Dot How and when do migrants invest in private and public health schemes in their home communities?
Dot How do the new private insurance schemes and migrant-financed public facilities affect access to and quality of health care for different members of the community?
Dot Why do migrants invest in public facilities? Is it to meet the expressed needs of communities in the place of origin, or for some other reason?



Key Theme(s)
Health and Education

Type(s) of Migration

Ghana / Africa


Richard Black

Richmond Tiemoko (Nigeria)

Key Activities

1 Interviews with organisers, members and beneficiaries of health insurance schemes amongst Ghanaian and Ivorian migrants in the UK and France and their families in Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire.
2 Identification of investments in public and private health facilities by migrants and migrant associations.
3 Interviews with individual investors and association members.
4 Transcription of interviews and analysis of findings.

Key Outputs

Policy briefing
Short article for the popular press
Possible proposal for more detailed research to be funded externally or in Phase 3


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With thanks to IOM and Claudia Natali for the photographs