Migrant health in the European Region


The dramatic increase in migration to the Region highlights the need to identify best practices and engage in a cross-national political dialogue on migration. Through the Public Health Aspects of Migration in Europe (PHAME) project, WHO/Europe works closely with Member States to strengthen the health sector’s preparedness and public health capacity to better address emergency-related migration.

The project is implemented within the new WHO European health policy framework of Health 2020 and draws particular attention to reducing health inequalities and ensuring people-centred health systems.


The WHO European Region as a whole and particularly countries closest to North Africa and the Middle East face large influxes of migrants. This population inflow can pose significant health challenges.

Overall, migration has led to an increase in the Region’s population by 5 million since 2005, and accounts for nearly 70% of the population growth between 2005 and 2010. Today, 73 million migrants are estimated to be living in the European Region, accounting for nearly 8% of the total population. Women represent 52% of migrants.