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Eur J Public Health. 2014 Oct;24(5):712-20. doi: 10.1093/eurpub/cku036. Epub 2014 Apr 9.

The right of access to health care for undocumented migrants: a revision of comparative analysis in the European context.

Author information

1
1 Andalusian School of Public Health, 18011 Granada, Spain 2 Centre for Biomedical Network Research - Epidemiology and Public Health (CIBERESP), Spain amets.suess.easp@juntadeandalucia.es.
2
1 Andalusian School of Public Health, 18011 Granada, Spain 2 Centre for Biomedical Network Research - Epidemiology and Public Health (CIBERESP), Spain.
3
1 Andalusian School of Public Health, 18011 Granada, Spain.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The recent introduction of adjustment measures in the Spanish context by means of the Royal Decree-law 16/2012 (RDL 16/2012), which limits access to health care for undocumented migrants, raises the question about the state of the matter in different European Union member states.

METHODS:

Narrative review of comparative studies published between 2009 and 2012 that analyzes the right to health care for undocumented migrants in the European context.

RESULTS:

The review shows a high degree of variability regarding health care entitlements of undocumented migrants in different European countries, a frequent legal restriction of access to health care, as well as barriers in the effective access to health care. The studies coincide in recommending access at all health care levels, regardless of the administrative status of the person seeking treatment. The analysis of the impact of the current economic crisis on access and quality of the health care directed to undocumented migrants, as well as the knowledge of the migrants' perspective are identified as future research areas.

CONCLUSIONS:

Compared with other European countries, the introduction of the measures established in the RDL 16/2012 modifies the place of the Spanish Public Health Care System from being situated in the group of countries that permit undocumented migrants access to all health care levels, towards the category of highest restriction.

PMID:
24723691
DOI:
10.1093/eurpub/cku036
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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