University College London (UCL) is carrying out a study to investigate health problems affecting migrants in Europe.
Since people living away from their home country are more vulnerable to certain health problems, this new study co-led by UCL researchers aims to identify and address the issues that they face accessing healthcare in Europe.
The researchers are looking for anyone aged 18 or over living away from their home country to take part in an anonymous 15-minute survey for the European Commission to help shape the European healthcare system.
People interested in taking part in the study, called aMASE (advancing Migrant Access to health Services in Europe), can access the survey in 14 languages at www.amase.eu
“Many people living away from their home country are at higher risk of various health problems and are often more reluctant to go to the doctor,” says Dr Fiona Burns of the UCL Institute of Epidemiology & Health, who is co-leading the new study. “This survey will help us to better understand the reasons behind this and enable participants to shape the future of European healthcare.”
The survey results will help researchers to understand the scale of certain health problems facing people living away from their home country and develop ways to address them. The research will be used to identify at-risk groups and the barriers that prevent people from accessing healthcare services before they become seriously ill.
“There are a number of factors that could affect how different people use healthcare services across Europe,” explains Dr Burns. “For example, some people might be unfamiliar with or simply unaware of the healthcare services available to them. There are also cultural stigmas attached to certain conditions, such as HIV, that can make people reluctant to report them. This study will help us to identify the main barriers that certain people are facing and develop ways of breaking these down.”
The results of the study will be forwarded to the European Commission to help improve public health across Europe. “People move around Europe all the time, so improving the health of anyone will benefit everyone, helping to reduce the incidence and improve access to treatment of infectious diseases across the continent,” Dr Burns says.