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Migrants do not bring illness. In fact, they help fight it, the report says



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By Maggie Fox

People who oppose immigration often argue that migrants bring diseases and that they are then burdening the health systems in their new countries so ill.

But that's not true, argued a team of experts in a new report released Wednesday.

In fact, they point out that immigrants make up a significant part of the healthcare workforce in their new homelands

"There is no evidence that migrants spread disease," said Drs. Paul Spiegel, who heads the Center for Humanitarian Health at the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. "This is a false argument to keep migrants out," Spiegel told NBC News.

"Contrary to current political narratives that identify migrants as carriers of disease that affect society, migrants are an integral part of US economic stability," added Terry McGovern, the Department of Population and Family Health at Columbia University.

McGovern and Spiegel were among the 24 commissioners working on a two-year project to investigate whether migration spreads disease and examines the impact that migrants have on health. The latest study, published in the medical journal Lancet, finds that migration benefits economies. She also notes that people use myths to fight migration.

"In too many countries, the problem of migration is used to divide societies and push a populist agenda," said Lancet editor Richard Horton.

"With a billion." People on the move, growing populations in many regions of the world and the rising aspirations of a new generation of young people, migration can not go away: migrants tend to make a greater contribution to the economy than they cost and how we shape their health and the well-being of today will affect our societies for generations to come. "


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