Discussion held on migration health policy

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Oct 12, 2017-The Ministry of Health in conjunction with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) on Wednesday organised a consultation meeting on the development of National Migration Health Policy to address a wide range of health issues faced by migrants and their families. 

Low level of education and skills among Nepali migrant workers on job in foreign soil makes them prone to health-related risks throughout the migration cycle. Furthermore, their health is also affected by the lack of linguistically or culturally appropriate health services in their countries of destination. 

The new policy, which is in line with Nepal’s newly promulgated 2015 Constitution, aims to address the health rights of Nepali migrants, the IOM said in a statement 

on Wednesday. 

“We cannot achieve Sustainable Development Goal 3.8 on universal health coverage unless the health needs of migrants and refugees are met,” said IOM Nepal Chief of Mission Paul Norton. 

“This policy will provide an opportunity to promote a more coherent and integrated approach to health, beyond the treatment of specific diseases for all populations, including migrants, irrespective of their legal and migratory status.” 

According to the Department of Foreign Employment (DoFE), more than half of all Nepali households now have at least one migrant family member currently abroad or living in Nepal as a “returnee”. 

The policy will be based on principles that recognise the health rights of citizens; the right to health-related information at both pre-departure and employment at destination stages; easy access to health services, accountability of health services providers; and regulated and monitored health assessment services, read the statement. 

The upcoming policy will also aim to reduce health vulnerabilities of migrant workers in all stages of the migration cycle and also protect the health of host communities from public health threats related to migration.  

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Shrikrishna Giri, chief of Policy, Planning and International Co-operation Division of Ministry of Health said the policy was being developed to promote the health of migrants and address the health related issues and challenges faced by the migrants during the migration process

Published: 12-10-2017 07:40

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