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Symposium: “Migrants’ Health: health and health care delivery for specific groups”
A symposium on “Migrants’ Health: health and health care delivery for specific groups” was held at the World Health Summit Regional Meeting in Montreal on May 8, 2017.
With increasing numbers of migrants and refugees globally and changing perceptions, attitudes and policies towards them in a number of countries, it has become increasingly urgent to address the health needs of these people in line with international rights and accords and humanitarian principles.
The Symposium highlighted several critical areas for action, including the need to extend and update international and national policies; to move beyond emotional images to more rational representations of migrants and refugees; to improve migrants’ access to health services while removing the fear that they will be reported to immigration authorities; and to develop approaches to embedding not only ‘cultural competence’ but also ‘cultural safety’ in health services and the workers and institutions that provide them, including through systemic reforms to education and training.
Above all, the need for courageous leadership beyond the health sector was recognized in the comment: “the bottom line is that it is political will that counts. It’s not looking good for migrants. The problem is beyond public health”.
This symposium was jointly organized by University of Geneva, John Hopkins Bloomberg School of public health, World Health Summit, Montreal Clinical Research Institute, University of Montréal, Université Paris Descartes, CVV and Charité Universitätsmedizin.