Migration is a social determinant of health. Throughout the migration process, migrants are exposed to a unique set of sociocultural, economic and environmental factors that may increase their risk of exposure to negative health outcomes, including communicable and non-communicable diseases.
Migrants and mobile populations can face many obstacles in accessing essential health care services due to several factors including irregular immigration status, language barriers, discrimination, a lack of migrant-inclusive health policies and lack of affordable health services. Such disparities impact the well-being of migrants and host communities and undermine the realization of global health goals.
Despite migrants’ considerable contributions to the development of host and home communities, as well as the imperative to uphold the human right to health and to improve public health, many migrants are left behind and unaccounted for in health systems. The realization of UHC for migrants requires innovative, evidence-based policies and sustainable financial mechanisms that emphasize whole-of-society and whole-of-government actions, and involve migrants, including health workers, as co-developers of health services.