Migration is associated with mobility and movement, and migrants and refugees receive healthcare services during their journeys from a variety of countries and healthcare systems. However, their medical history, preventive and curative treatment or counselling received, are not always documented, due to the lack of a proper documentation record where health data can be stored and integrated in a follow up examination.
Building upon EU’s / IOM’s Personal Health Record, which was provided in a hard copy format, the CARE project provided the development of an integrated electronic system for tracking and monitoring the health status of migrants and refugees. This system encompassed a portable device, which was delivered to migrants and refugees, containing their personal medical history, as well as information on any treatment provided. Moreover, a dedicated software enabled healthcare professionals to access the migrants’ / refugees’ personal health record and integrate it in a follow up examination. Data were also provided to be stored in the local database of the hotspot / migrants’ / refugees’ center, where the digital device was first delivered.
Monitoring and being able to track migrants and refugees health status promoted continuity of care, establishing mechanisms of cooperation between countries of origin, transit and destination. This can guarantee appropriate and targeted health assistance and health promotion for migrants/refugees, as well as for the local population. Furthermore, effective health status monitoring can also lead to avoiding any duplications in health treatment and related costs for the healthcare systems.