How does legal status matter for oral health care among Mexican-origin children in California?

R. S. Oropesa, Nancy S. Landale, Marianne M. Hillemeier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


This research examines the relationship between legal status and oral health care among Mexican-origin children. Using the 2001–2014 California Health Interview Surveys, the objectives are: (1) to demonstrate population-level changes in the legal statuses of parents, the legal statuses of children, and the likelihood of receiving dental care; (2) to reveal how the roles of legal status boundaries in dental care are changing; and (3) to determine whether the salience of these boundaries is attributable to legal status per se. The results reveal increases in the native-born share and dental care utilization for the total Mexican-origin population. Although dental care was primarily linked to parental citizenship early in this period, parental legal statuses are no longer a unique source of variation in utilization (despite the greater likelihood of insurance among citizens). These results imply that future gains in utilization among Mexican-origin children will mainly come from overcoming barriers to care among the native born.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)730-739
Number of pages10
JournalSSM - Population Health
StatePublished - Dec 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Health(social science)
  • Health Policy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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