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Isr Med Assoc J. 2005 May;7(5):315-9.

Perinatal outcome among non-residents in Israel.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Lis Maternity Hospital, Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center, Tel Aviv, Israel.



Foreign workers in Israel are not covered by the comprehensive medical insurance that all Israelis receive. They have national insurance and injury-related coverage, which does not include routine pregnancy follow-up


To compare perinatal outcome between partially insured non-resident migrants in Israel and comprehensively insured Israeli women.


Parameters of perinatal outcome were compared between 16,012 Israeli and 721 foreign women living in Israel. Outcome measures included birth weight, distribution of gestational age at delivery, neonatal complications, cesarean section, neonatal intensive care unit admission, intrauterine fetal death rates, and duration of post-partum hospitalization.


Deliveries prior to 28 weeks gestation occurred more frequently among non-residents (1.3% vs. 0.6%, P < 0.001). Gestational diabetes and preeclamptic toxemia were significantly more prevalent among non-residents (3.2% vs. 1.9%, P < 0.05 and 4.9% vs. 3.1%, P < 0.05, respectively). The cesarean rates were 18% and 35% for residents and non-residents, respectively (P < 0.001), and the post-cesarean recovery period was longer among non-residents (4.8 vs. 3.6 days, P < 0.05). The mean birth weight was similar in the two groups (3,214 vs. 3,231 g), although macrosomia (>4,000 g) was more prevalent among non-residents, who also had higher rates of NICU admission ((9.6% vs. 8%, P < 0.05) and intrauterine fetal death (6.6/1,000 vs. 3.7/1,000, P < 0.05).


Non-resident parturients in Israel are more susceptible to an adverse perinatal outcome than their Israeli counterparts. We suggest that government subsidization of non-residents' health expenditures would reduce the differences in perinatal outcome between these two groups.

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