Migration and workplace accidents in Spain

Immigration tends to reduce the number of accidents in the workplace. In Spain during the economic boom of 2004-2009, a significant increase in migrant labour meant a move out of higher-risk roles for Spanish-born workers, which led to a reduction in accidents overall.

For every extra 1000 immigrants of a particular gender and education level (the effect was bigger for men than women), there was a decrease in the number of workplace accidents by 9 for every 100,000 Spanish workers. This suggests the number of working accidents suffered by the native population dropped by 10,890 during the period 2004-2009 as a result of the inflow of immigrants. Most of the change is driven by reductions in mild accidents rather than in severe accidents.

What does that mean for health care costs?

How do we know this?