The International Organization for Migration held the Seminar on Health and Migration at the International Conference Center Geneva, on 9-11 June 2004. The seminar was co-sponsored by the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

This seminar brought together for the first time health and migration officials for an exchange of views on health and migration policy concerns, with a particular focus on the public health implications of increasingly mobile populations. Its primary goals were to build capacity and to enhance understanding of the complex relationship between health and population mobility by providing a forum where policymakers, practitioners and other stakeholders from governments, intergovernmental agencies and non-governmental organizations can meet and exchange perspectives. 


The agenda maintained a balance between health and migration topics in an effort to inform both health and migration policy participants of the key issues and challenges at stake in each of the domains.

The first session set the context by exploring the relationship between migration and health both in its importance as a health issue and the issues it raises from the perspective of migration practitioners.

The second session explored issues related to the management of migratory movement in relation to emerging and re-emerging communicable diseases such as SARS, including through consideration of the lessons learned from specific case studies of effective approaches to address migrant health concerns.

The third session focused on existing national and international migration and health policies, and what we can learn from these in addressing the public health implications of contemporary population mobility. A separate session under this agenda item addressed the migration of health care workers, which has become a significant policy concern globally.

The last session explored ways to increase policy coordination between migration and health policy makers in view of the shared aim of promoting healthier migrants and healthier societies.

Session I: Health and Migration Challenges

  • Migration perspective
  • Health perspective
  • Bridging health and migration   Presentation

Session II: Public Health and Migration

  • Managing global public health …Partnerships and developing bridging public health programs

Session III: Migration and Health Policies

  • Investing in migration health
  • Migration of health care workers

Session IV: The Way Forward

  • What is foreseen in the future?
    • Population mobility and health crisis in conflict situations  Presentation  
    • Possible solutions to manage migrants' health: Thailand's perspective  Conference Paper  
    • HIV/AIDS and population mobility - Where to go from here
  • Where can we go from here?
    • Closing remarks on the theme of " benefits of investing in migration health"  Closing remarks
Event documents