New association to promote refugees’ health – University of Copenhagen

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11 September 2015

New association to promote refugees’ health

INTEGRATION

The newly formed Danish Association for Migrants’ Health will be working to promote health among refugees, migrants and asylum seekers. Health is vital for successful integration, according to the association’s chairperson who is also an associate professor at the University of Copenhagen.

“Improved health among migrants is a prerequisite for successful integration. It is, however, also a challenge that demands a collective, coordinated effort involving many different players,” says associate professor Dr Marie Nørredam, who is also chairperson of the newly formed Danish Association for Migrants’ Health (SIS), which had its statutory general meeting last month.

“Migration is at the top of the global and local agenda, only the importance of health and disease is often set aside in debates about migration and welfare,” Marie Nørredam states.

The purpose of the association is to promote health in the broadest possible manner among refugees, migrants and asylum seekers as well as developing the health sector’s efforts to reduce the rising inequality in health. The association wishes to increase knowledge about migrants’ health and diseases among the Danish public and among the country’s relevant organisations, institutions and authorities. The association will also promote research and education in the field and help improve the health sector’s efforts in prevention, diagnostics and treatment of diseases among the new population groups in Denmark and their descendants.

Wide support for the new association

The association’s initiators include the Danish Research Centre for Migration, Ethnicity and Health (MESU) at the University of Copenhagen, and the migration medical clinics in Odense and Hvidovre, the Danish Red Cross and the children’s ward at Rigshospitalet. Furthermore, the association’s statutory general meeting revealed great interest and support from a wide range of health related institutions and organisations, representing both areas of research and practice.

The association thus provides a wider basis for handling the new challenges and for utilizing the new possibilities that comes with migration. The initiators wish the association to provide a stronger profile for their area of interest in general and to create an innovative and development-oriented forum for exchanging ideas on migrants’ health and integration.

Chairperson of the new association Marie Nørredam is an associate professor at the Danish Research Centre for Migration, Ethnicity and Health (MESU) at the Department of Public Health at the University of Copenhagen and a physician at the Migration Medical Clinic at Hvidovre Hospital.

Contact: 

Dr Marie Nørredam 
Mobile: +45 2521 9925