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LETTER TO THE EDITOR
Year : 2017  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 113-114

Aiming to Achieve Universal Health Coverage and Improve Health Standards Among Migrant Populations


Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College & Research Institute, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Date of Web Publication28-Jun-2017

Correspondence Address:
Saurabh R Shrivastava
Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College & Research Institute, 3rd Floor, Ammapettai Village, Thiruporur-Guduvancherry Main Road, Sembakkam Post, Kancheepuram 603108, Tamil Nadu
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/mamcjms.mamcjms_26_17

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How to cite this article:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Aiming to Achieve Universal Health Coverage and Improve Health Standards Among Migrant Populations. MAMC J Med Sci 2017;3:113-4

How to cite this URL:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Aiming to Achieve Universal Health Coverage and Improve Health Standards Among Migrant Populations. MAMC J Med Sci [serial online] 2017 [cited 2017 Nov 21];3:113-4. Available from: http://www.mamcjms.in/text.asp?2017/3/2/113/209021

Dear Editor,

Globally, it has been observed that a very large number of people are on the move currently when compared with any previous estimates.[1] In fact, the available estimates from across the world indicate that more than 1 billion migrants are present, of which 75% are internal migrants, whereas the remaining proportion of people are international migrants.[1] Further, it is quite an alarming estimate that almost 65 million people are coerced for their displacement either due to conflicts or because of humanitarian emergencies, of which more than 85% migrants are from developing nations.[1]

It is extremely important to realize that due to the rapid population movement, serious impacts have been observed both on the health status of the people and the health sector delivery system.[2] Considering the fact that every individual has the right to have a highest attainable standard of health, and that it is quite essential to accomplish universal health coverage, if we want to meet Sustainable Development Goals, it is indispensable to provide health services to the migrants.[1],[2] In addition, the problems such as lack of preparedness of the health sector to respond to the unprecedented load of migrant people, lack of access to health services, and financial cost involved in availing health services significantly affect the health standards of the people.[1],[2],[3]

At the same time, it is not quite unusual that due to the lack of planning, even the routine health care or welfare services are jeopardized.[2] The need of the hour is to offer and provide health checkups to the migrant people for both infectious and noncommunicable diseases without making it as a mandatory requirement.[4] The results of these health assessments can be used for establishing a diagnosis or starting appropriate treatment, and should never be considered for ejecting a migrant from a nation.[4] In addition, the migrant populations should be vaccinated as per the routine immunization program irrespective of their immunization status.[4]

Moreover, it is important to ensure that every migrant individual should have a right to health and an equitable access to quality-assured essential health care services without discrimination on the basis of any determinant.[2],[4] Moreover, efforts should be taken to formulate migrant-sensitive health policies, strengthen health care delivery and information system, train health professional according to the cultural requirements of the migrants, and develop liaison with various partners to improve the existing situation.[1],[2],[3],[4]

The European region is facing a large influx of people from neighboring nations, and various loopholes in the health care delivery system have been identified. To improve the scenario, the World Health Organization initiated a European Knowledge Hub on Health and Migration.[5] This hub will act as a source of scientific information and will allow the experts to respond quickly and efficiently to the health needs of the population.[5] Similar kind of initiatives can be tried in other nations as well.[5]

To conclude, in the modern era, the incidence of migration has increased to a great extent. However, owing to the necessity that all people should have access to standard health care, it is very much important to systematically plan for the strengthening of the health care delivery system to meet the needs of the migrant population.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

 
  References Top

1.
World Health Organization. Refugee and Migrant Health; 2017. Available from: http://www.who.int/migrants/en/. [Last accessed on 2017 Mar 8].  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Exploring the impact of migration on dimensions of health: Global overview. Int J Health Syst Disaster Manage 2015;3:45-6.  Back to cited text no. 2
  [Full text]  
3.
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Systematically addressing the health concerns of migrants universally. Int J Adv Med Health Res 2016;3:48-9.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
World Health Organization. Health and Migration − Online Q&A; 2017. Available from: http://www.who.int/features/qa/88/en/. [Last accessed on 2017 Mar 5].  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
World Health Organization. WHO Launches European National Hub on Migration and Health; 2017. Available from: http://www.euro.who.int/en/health-topics/health-determinants/migration-and-health/news/news/2016/11/who-launches-european-knowledge-hub-on-health-and-migration. [Last accessed on 2017 Mar 8].  Back to cited text no. 5
    




 

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