The right to healthcare for irregular migrants in Sweden : a dilemma for the universal model and the moral economy

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The right to healthcare for irregular migrants in Sweden : a dilemma for the universal model and the moral economy

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Publication BookChapter
Title The right to healthcare for irregular migrants in Sweden : a dilemma for the universal model and the moral economy
Author(s) Björngren Cuadra, Carin
Date 2014
Editor(s) Van Aerschot, Paul; Daenzer, Paticia
English abstract
The objective of this chapter is to explore Swedish policies related to health care for irregular migrants residing in Sweden. Accordingly, policies in that field will be outlined along with criticism and arguments voiced by advocacy groups as well as enacted changes, most salient in the adoption of a new law which came into force in July 2013. Under this law, irregular migrants have a certain and limited right to health care. Taking into consideration the acknowledged strong link between immigration, integration and welfare policies (Brochmann and Hagelund 2011), this chapter will discuss health care policies in light of the general Swedish welfare policy as well as the policies of migration and integration. Some possible interpretations of ‘what is at stake’ will be offered and it will be argued that Sweden seems to find itself in a dilemma involving how to respond to the presence of irregular migrants. This presence challenges the ‘territorially bounded state-centric model’ (Benhabib 2002) making it, to paraphrase Benhabib, increasingly transparent and fragile. The dilemma involves a highly valued universal welfare model and its underpinning moral economy, which generally does not include irregular migrants in its norms, because there is no relation of reciprocity leading to enti-tlement to Swedish general welfare. This chapter argues that the new law targeting irregular migrants is not to be understood as an inclusion in the moral economy. Rather, it is to be seen as maintenance of exclusion, yet, in a new mode. However, arguments and actions championed by advocacy groups and some stakeholders bear witness to processes that can be interpreted as an ongoing renegotiation of the current moral economy. The renegotiation concerns the relationship between two central policy areas, health care policy and migration policy.
Link http://www.ashgate.com/isbn/9781472436542 (external link to publication)
Publisher Ashgate
Host/Issue The Integration and protection of immigrants : Canadian and Scandinavian critiques
Series/Issue Law and Migration;
ISBN 9781472436542
Pages 139-153
Language eng (iso)
Subject(s) Irregular migrants
Right to health care
Sweden
Univsersal welfare model
Moral economy
Humanities/Social Sciences
Research Subject Categories::SOCIAL SCIENCES
Handle http://hdl.handle.net/2043/18245 (link to this page)

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