Currently, there are about 11.8 million undocumented aliens in the United States who are not eligible for public insurance or any type of private coverage obtained through the American Health Care Act of 2017. This creates barriers to healthcare for this large population and has negative implications for the healthcare system. Despite the availability of clinics and low-cost healthcare, this group tends to underuse resources or seek healthcare for emergencies only which leads to increased cost totaling approximately $1.1 billion a year. The goal of this qualitative study is to better understand what it is like to be an undocumented alien seeking healthcare. Eight semi-structured interviews with Latino undocumented aliens were conducted. Interviews were transcribed into WORD™ documents and reviewed for accuracy. Data was analyzed using content analysis to code and identify prominent themes. Analysis of data from participants indicate the following themes embody the experience of being an undocumented alien in seek of healthcare: living in the unsure, high costs, system barriers, language and communication incongruences, perceived discrimination, exploitation and deportation, and relief in finally getting care. Undocumented aliens put off getting healthcare as long as possible due to these factors, despite having many needs. Healthcare practitioners must become familiar with these experiences to address and correct these barriers. Advocacy and healthcare changes take on increasing urgency to ensure the well-being of these individuals.
Chase, Susan K.
Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.)
College of Nursing
Orlando (Main) Campus
Length of Campus-only Access
Torrez Pon, Eliany C., "Exploring What It Is Like to Be an Undocumented Alien in Seek of Healthcare" (2018). Honors in the Major Theses. 316.