Academic Literature

A Matter of Life & Death: Advocates in New York Respond to Medical Repatriation (2011): Our former Health Justice Director, Nisha Agarwal, worked with our medical repatriation workgroup and many others to create this article published in the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review, which diagnoses the scope of the problem and prescribes short- and long-term solutions for uninsured patients, including examining legal theories to challenge the legality of medical repatriation.

The Practice of Medical Repatriation: The Privatization of Immigration Enforcement and Denial of Human Rights (2009): Lori A. Nessel, Professor of Law and Director of the Center for Social Justice at Seton Hall University School of Law, wrote this law review article to bring to light the issues surrounding medical repatriation. The article analyzes the legality of hospitals’ actions in medical deportation cases and calls for congressional reform.

She also compiled this summary on The Legality and Ethics of Medical Repatriation as a LexisNexis Emerging Issue Analysis in October 2009.

In 2012, she published Disposable Workers: Applying a Human Rights Framework to Analyze Duties Owed to Seriously Injured Or Ill Migrants.


Vishal Agraharkar, Deporting the Sick: Regulating International Patient Dumping by U.S. Hospitals, 41 Columbia Human Rights Law Review 569 (2010).

Ayse Akincigil, Raymond Sanchez Mayers, and Fontaine H. Fulghum, Emergency Room Use by Undocumented Mexican Immigrants, 38 J. Soc. & Soc. Welfare 33 (2011).

Maya A. Babu and Joseph Wolpin, Undocumented Immigrants, Healthcare Access, and Medical Repatriation Following Serious Medical Illness, 3:3 Journal of Health & Life Sciences Law 83 (2010).

Lindita Bresa, Uninsured, Illegal, and in Need of Long-Term Care: The Repatriation of Undocumented Immigrants by U.S. Hospitals, 40:4 Seton Hall Law Review 1663 (2010).

G. Adam Campbell, Scott Sanoff, Mitchell H. Rosner, Care of the Undocumented Immigrant in the United States With ESRD, 55:1 American Journal of Kidney Diseases 181 (2010).

Nathan Cortez, Embracing the New Geography of Health Care: A Novel Way to Cover Those Left Out of Health Reform, 84:4 Southern California Law Review 859 (2011).

Council on Ethical and Judicial Affairs (CEJA), Physician Responsibilities for Safe Patient Discharge (Resolution 4, I-08), CEJA Report 2-I-09 18 (2009).

Janet L. Dolgin and Katherine R. Dieterich, When Others Get Too Close: Immigrants, Class, and the Health Care Debate, 19 Cornell J. L. Pub. Pol’y 283 (2009-2010).

Sean Elliott, Staying within the Lines: The Question of Post-Stabilization Treatment for Illegal Immigrants under Emergency Medicaid, 24 J. Contemp. Health L. & Pol’y 149 (2007-2008).

Angela Epolito, Emergency? How the Federal Focus on Emergency Care Shifts the Cost of Immigrant Healthcare to Public Hospitals, 17 Annals of Health Law 323 (2008).

Sarah E. Greenlee, Cast Back into “Tempest-Tost” Waters: The “Uncharted Seas” of Private Medical Repatriations, 60:1 Case Western Reserve Law Review 281 (2009).

William Greenough, Treating and Repatriating: An Unacceptable Policy, 11:7 American Medical Association Journal of Ethics 502 (2009).

Nabilah Irshad, Medical Repatriations: Death Sentencing United States Immigrants, 20 Transnational Law and Contemporary Problems 797 (2012).

Kit Johnson, Patients without Borders: Extralegal Deportation by Hospitals, 78 University of Cincinnati Law Review 657 (2009).

James W. Jones, Laurence B. McCullough, and Bruce W. Richman, My brother’s keeper: uncompensated care for illegal immigrants, 44:3 Journal of Vascular Surgery 679 (2006 ).

Jeffrey Kahntroff & Rochelle Watson, Refusal of Emergency Care and Patient Dumping, 11:1 Am. Med. Ass’n J. of Ethics 49 (2009).

Svetlana Lebedinski, EMTALA: Treatment of Undocumented Aliens and the Financial Burden it Places on Hospitals, 7:1 J.L. Soc’y 146 (2005-2006).

Maureen McKinney, Care of Undocumented Immigrants with ESRD: A Consistent Federal Policy is Needed, Experts SayNephrology Times (2010).

Natalia Molina, Borders, Laborers, and Racialized Medicalization: Mexican Immigration and US Public Health Practices in the 20th Century, 101:6 American Journal of Public Health 1024 (2011)

Corynn Neevel, At the Intersection of Immigration and Health Care Law: The Lack of Clear Standards Governing Medical Repatriation and Suggestions for Future Oversight, 45:3 Gonzaga Law Review 821 (2009/10).

Caitlin O’Connell, Return to Sender: Evaluating the Medical Repatriations of Uninsured Immigrants, 87 Wash. U. L. Rev. 1429 (2010).

Daniel J. Procaccini, First, Do No Harm: Tort Liability, Regulation and the Forced Repatriation of Undocumented Immigrants, 30:2 Boston College Third World Law Journal 475 (2010).

Sheldon M. Retchin, Sheryl L. Garland, and Emmanuel A. Anum, The Transfer of Uninsured Patients From Academic to Community Primary Care Settings, 15:4 The American Journal of Managed Care245 (2009).

Mitchell F. Rice and Woodrow Jones, Jr., The uninsured and patient dumping: recent policy responses in indigent care, 83:10 J Natl Med Assoc 874 (1991).

Rudolph A. Rodriguez, The Dilemma of Undocumented Immigrants with ESRD, 39:4 Dialysis and Transplantation 131 (2010).

Jennifer M. Smith, Screen, Stabilize, and Ship: EMTALA, U.S. Hospitals, and Undocumented Immigrants (International Patient Dumping), 10 Hous. J. Health L. & Policy 309 (2010).

Kendra Stead, Critical Condition: Using Asylum Law to Contest Forced Medical Repatriation of Undocumented Immigrants, 104 Northwestern University Law Review 307 (2010).

Stefanie Vincent, Medical Repatriation: A Fourteenth Amendment Analysis of the International Patient Transferring of Illegal Aliens, 33 Houston Journal of International Law 95 (2010).

Jill E. Winland-Brown and Adam L. Dobrin, Medical Repatriation: Physicians’ and Nurses’ Responses to a Dilemma, 9:4 Southern Online Journal of Nursing Research (2009).

Joseph Wolpin, Medical repatriation of alien patients, 31:1 Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics 152 (2009).

Emily R. Zoellner, Medical Repatriation: Examining the Legal and Ethical Implications of an Emerging Practice, 32 Journal of Law and Policy 515 (2010).

For a clearinghouse of information on undocumented immigrants and their access to health care more broadly, check out Undocumented Patients. The site includes a searchable bibliography on the issue, which can be browsed by author, year, and publication.


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