Launch of the Knowledge Hub on Health and Migration
15 November 2016, Sicily, Italy
The Regional Health Council of Sicily and the WHO Regional Office for Europe will hold a meeting on 15 November 2016 to launch the Knowledge Hub on Health and Migration, established in May 2016 with the financial support of the Regional Health Council. In addition, Sicilian health authorities will present an overview of subnational health policies targeting the migrant population, and provide an update on past and current activities framed under the contingency plan that was developed in 2014 with the technical assistance of the Regional Office.
The meeting will be attended by a large and diverse audience comprised of professionals working within and outside the health sector and who are involved in the management of public health and migration in Sicily. These will include regional and local policy-makers, health professionals, coast guard and police authorities, managers of migration centres, representatives of nongovernmental organizations, as well as journalists.
Dr Zsuzsanna Jakab, WHO Regional Director for Europe, will also take part in the launch of the Knowledge Hub. During her time in Sicily, Dr Jakab will visit key arrival points including the hot spot in Trapani, where she will meet local authorities and professionals who are working on rescue operations and with newly arrived migrants, and providing accommodation.
The primary objectives of the event include the following:
- to launch the Knowledge Hub on Health and Migration, and present its objectives within the overall implementation of the Strategy and Action Plan for Refugee and Migrant Health in the WHO European Region;
- to outline previous and ongoing collaboration between the WHO Regional Office for Europe and the regional health authorities in Sicily for the management of the public health implications of large-scale migration.
Background: Knowledge Hub on Health and Migration
The Knowledge Hub on Health and Migration responds to the need for an educational institute devoted to international migration and public health in the WHO European Region. It aims to provide a scientific and capacity-building forum to develop and improve public policies and interventions to address the health needs of migrants and the public health implications of migration in the WHO European Region. The Knowledge Hub will therefore contribute to improving countries’ preparedness and capacity, promoting people-centred health systems and reducing health inequalities within the migrant population. The objectives of the Knowledge Hub are grounded in the European health policy framework, Health 2020, as well as the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
The Knowledge Hub on Health and Migration is being established by the Migration and Health team of the Division of Policy and Governance for Health and Well-being, in collaboration with the Division of Information, Evidence, Research and Innovation and under the umbrella of the WHO European Health Information Initiative. Its activities will contribute to the implementation of the Strategy and Action Plan for Refugee and Migrant Health in the WHO European Region, adopted by the Regional Committee for Europe in September 2016.