Lancet Migration: global collaboration to advance migration health
Migration, a defining issue of our time, is essential to growing economies and is an integral part of the social and cultural fabric of our societies. The positive impacts of migration are apparent globally, with more than 164 million international labour workers contributing to economies worldwide,1 and hundreds of millions more moving for work within their own countries.2 The numbers of forcibly displaced people, such as refugees and internally displaced persons, worldwide are much smaller but rose to a record 70·8 million in 2018.3 The World Bank predicts that nearly half of the world’s poor
will live in fragile and conflict-affected states by 2030.4
However, despite the fact that migration will always be part of our global reality, people who migrate often face restrictive migration policies, unsafe working conditions, discrimination, and health policies and systems that exclude them at many stages of their journeys: within countries of origin, in transit settings, and destination countries alike.5, 6 Adverse policies and conditions increasingly deny migrants their basic human rights, including the right to health.7 These, have resulted in preventable deaths and morbidity due to mental and physical health complications among migrants arising from inadequate access to basic health care and conditions that do not meet even basic humanitarian standards. 8 It is not only restrictive migration policies that harm migrant health but also lack of policies within countries to enable access to services or reduce exposure to work or migration-related illness and injury.
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