Mare Nostrum - Common approach to upgrade asylum facilities in Italy and Malta - Download the Guide, the Practical handobook andf the DVD
The project “Mare Nostrum. Common approach to upgrade asylum facilities in Italy and Malta”, was financed by the EU European Refugee Fund and involved a number of institutional partners such as the Italian Ministry of Interior, the Ministry for Justice and Home Affairs and Ministry for Health, the Elderly, and Community Care of Malta, the National Institute for Health, Migration and Poverty (NIHMP, Italy) and the International Organisation for Migration (IOM).
In the framework of the project, objective of the NIHMP was to improve the health status of refugees and asylum seekers hosted in Italian and Maltese reception Centres, through the following actions:
• Offering direct second-level medical assistance in reception Centres for international protection seekers (in Malta);
• Providing information to civilian and police workers of the Centres, training health workers of the Centres and of local public health services, producing and disseminating informative and training materials (in Italy and Malta).
Medical activities implemented in 9 reception centres for asylum seekers in Malta
Since August 2010 to June 2011, first and second level medical assistance was offered to the asylum seekers hosted in the 9 reception centres after having spent some time in a detention centre. The medical team was composed of a NIHMP dermatologist and infectious disease expert and by cultural mediators. They were also in charge for implementing training activities for medical and non-medical workers involved in assistance to international protection seekers.
The medical activities provided in the Centres consisted of:
• Skin and infectious disease screening performed during the first medical examination or on patient’s request;
• Medical evaluation, follow-up and referral to second-level care;
• Collection and analysis of personal data, information on the journey, on present and past medical conditions and on risk factors for sexually transmitted diseases and addiction;
• Health and hygiene promotion activities, particularly as regard sexually transmitted diseases, personal hygiene and food preparation/preservation, implemented during or after medical examinations;
• Pilot study on a sample of 500 hosts of the Centres with the objective of assessing the prevalence of latent tuberculosis, hepatitis B and C, syphilis and chronic liver diseases. Screening results were reported on a certificate issued to participants. Positive patients were referred to competent health centres.
Information and training activities
- Seven training courses and sessions addressed to 190 health workers of local medical services (hospitals and medical centres). The training dealt with migration medicine and aimed at improving assistance to asylum seekers hosted in Maltese reception centres.
- Organisation of a number of information meetings for 100 civilian and police workers of the Centres. The meetings focused on the transmission of the most common infectious diseases in community settings.
Eight 2-day informative and training seminars were organised in Bari, Caltanissetta, Crotone and Trapani. 361 participants were involved, including health workers, civilian and police staff working in reception centres for asylum seekers and in local social and medical services.
Creation and dissemination of information materials
Creation of information materials for civilian and police staff including a guide on hygiene and prevention in community settings and a practical handbook for health care providers on the management of medical problems observable on migrants. A DVD on diagnosis and treatment of skin and infectious diseases observable in the hosts of reception centres was also produced in Italian.
Download the DVD (only available in Italian)
• Training in Italy involved reception centres for asylum seekers (CARA) of Crotone, Trapani, Caltanissetta and Bari and local health services;
• Maltese reception centres: Marsa Open Centre, Hal Far Tent Centre, Hal Far Hangar, Hal Far Family, Hal Far Female Reception Centre, Dar-il-Sliem, Dar-Il Liedna, Peacelab, Balzan, MEC.