IOM Launches Expanded HIV Prevention and Health Promotion Programme for Migrants and Mobile Populations in East and Southern Africa

Posted: 
08/16/10

The International Organization for Migration (IOM)'s Regional
Office for Southern Africa, in partnership with the Swedish
International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) and the
Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) has announced the
geographic and thematic expansion of the Partnership on HIV and
Mobility in Southern Africa (PHAMSA) Programme, to include East
Africa.

The revised programme, renamed "Partnership on Health and
Mobility in East and Southern Africa" (PHAMESA), will include
broader migration health issues and will assist countries in East
and Southern Africa to address migrant vulnerability to health
risks including HIV. Labour migrants, forced migrants and irregular
migrants will be targeted by the programme throughout all stages of
the migration process.

The PHAMESA programme takes a comprehensive approach to
migrants' health, while emphasizing HIV prevention, treatment and
care, as well as related conditions such as tuberculosis (TB),
sexual and reproductive health, including Sexually Transmitted
Infections (STIs).

With funding of USD 9 million for the next three years, the
programme aims to assist countries in identifying and responding to
the health needs of migrants and affected communities through:
building the capacity of communities to address the health
vulnerability of migrants and mobile populations; 
advocacating for and providing technical assistance towards
developing migrant friendly health policies; undertaking and
disseminating empirical research and strategic information that
will highlight the link between migration and health.

The PHAMESA programme will bring together national and regional
stakeholders to share good practices, as well as to increase
coordination and cooperation among key technical partners and
stakeholders in East and Southern Africa. The programme will be
rolled out in Angola, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya,
Lesotho, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Tanzania, South Africa,
Swaziland, Uganda and Zambia.

"By harnessing the collective capacities, skills and knowledge
of IOM staff working at country and regional levels across East and
Southern Africa, this harmonized programme will assist both
government and civil society partners to deliver high quality
health services to communities and individuals affected by
migration," says Reiko Matsuyama, Migration Health Officer at
IOM.

PHAMESA carries forward lessons learnt from the successful
implementation of the PHAMSA programme which examined the needs of
migrants within the public health context. This approach recognizes
that migrants do not live in isolation and interact in workplaces
and in larger shared communities. Therefore, protecting migrants
from communicable diseases also protects migrant-receiving and
migrant sending-communities.

For further information please contact:

Nosipho Theyise

IOM Pretoria

Tel: +2712 342 2789

E-mail:  "mailto:ntheyise@iom.int">ntheyise@iom.int