Migration, work and health

Project No. BIA 1076


completed 12/2004


Germany has a large immigrant worker population. A survey was to be produced of the health status and morbidity patterns of this population group. The survey was also to examine whether immigrants differ from German employees in their occupational stress, incidence of accidents, and work-related diseases, in order for data to be obtained which might serve as a basis for specific prevention strategies.


Relevant statistics (national statistics, statistics on occupational accidents and diseases, etc.), scientific literature, data from the institutions for statutory accident insurance and prevention, and other sources were evaluated and summarized. The work-related health problems of immigrant workers in Germany were presented in descriptive analyses.


The existing results are provisional, as the arrangements for the recording of data on migrants in Germany is not satisfactory. Only in recent years the reporting of health statistics by the national German authorities was improved; the work-related health problems of migrants remain difficult to assess, however. Generally, migrant workers in Germany are found to be subject to greater psychosocial stress and more severe working conditions. They are also more frequently involved in occupational accidents. Occupational health studies reveal differences between German and foreign employees with regard to their respective morbidity aspects. As soon as better data are available, a comprehensive survey must be conducted.

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Financed by:
  • Hauptverband der gewerblichen Berufsgenossenschaften (HVBG)
Research institution(s):
  • Berufsgenossenschaftliches Institut für Arbeitsschutz - BIA

-cross sectoral-

Type of hazard:



Besondere Personengruppen, Epidemiologie, Arbeitsumwelt (Belastungen, Gefährdungen, Expositionen, Risiken)

Description, key words:

migration, immigrant, health status, Germany, social status, immigrant worker, morbidity, social epidemiology, epidemiological methods