GLOBALLY one in eight or over one billion people today are migrants with 281 million international migrants and many million individuals who are stateless, according to World Health Organisation (WHO).
Climate change, rising inequality, conflicts, trade, and population growth are accelerating these trends, WHO said in a statement. The health workforce has a vital role in providing for health rights and needs of refugees and migrants.
With an aim to support countries and territories to build professional competence and capacity to adequately address refugee and migrant health issues, WHO is organising the third edition of its annual Global School on Refugee and Migrant Health in Dhaka, Bangladesh with a focus on capacity-building.
“Migration and displacement can have deep and long-lasting impacts on physical and mental health and well-being, and cultural and linguistic differences, financial barriers, stigma and discrimination can all hamper access to health services for refugees and migrants,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General.
“Health workers have a crucial role in helping to overcome these barriers. The WHO Global School on Refugee and Migrant Health is a valuable resource for building the capacity of health workers to better serve refugees and migrants.”
While not all refugees and migrants are vulnerable, they are often due to an array of determinants, from xenophobia and discrimination to poor living, housing, and working conditions, and inadequate access to health services.