Health services for Syrian refugees in Turkey

WHO/Ali Saltan

A Syrian man receives health care in a WHO-supported refugee health training centre in Ankara

Since the beginning of the crisis in Syria, over 3.6 million Syrian refugees have fled to Turkey where they have been granted shelter. This makes Turkey the country with the highest number of refugees in the world.

WHO works closely with Turkey’s Ministry of Health to provide culturally and linguistically sensitive health services to Syrian refugees. From the Country Office in Turkey, WHO:

  • supports 7 refugee health training centres where Syrian doctors and nurses receive on-the-job training while providing health services for Syrian patients;
  • trains Arabic–Turkish language interpreters to serve as patient guides at primary, secondary and tertiary levels of care;
  • provides continuing medical education to Turkish and Syrian health workers in diagnosing and treating mental health conditions such as depression, anxiety and post-traumatic disorders; and
  • trains and employs Syrian community health support staff to provide home care to older and disabled Syrian people.

Since the WHO Refugee Health Programme began, almost 2000 Syrian health workers have been trained in 7 refugee health training centres to work in a network of up to 178 refugee health centres throughout Turkey. The Turkish Ministry of Health has already hired over half of them to provide health services to Syrian refugees.