“We have a moral and professional obligation to protect and improve the health of migrants”, noted Dr Piroska Östlin at the Public Talk, “Health and Migration: perspectives from Asia and Europe”, in Barcelona (7 March 2012). Dr Östlin, Programme Manager for Vulnerability and Health Programme, World Health Organization - Regional Office for Europe (WHO-EURO), was one of the two guest speakers at the event.

The other speaker for the evening was Dr Jaime F. Calderon Jr., Regional Migration Health Adviser at the International Organization for Migration (IOM). Dr Calderon stressed: “We need to work towards the development of national policies that enable equal access to health and social services for migrants regardless of their status”.

This ASEF event, co-organised with Casa Asia, was attended by more than 90 people. It was an opportunity to engage speakers and attendees in a dialogue to address ‘health of migrants’ as one of the most pressing issues in both Asian and European contexts.

Chief guests for the evening were - Ambassador Juan José Herrera de la Muela, Director General of Casa Asia / ASEF Governor for Spain, Mr Hidehiro Tsubaki, Consul-General of Consulate-General of Japan in Barcelona, and Mr Xavier Bosch, Director General for Immigration of the Autonomous Government of Catalonia.

This public event was organised in conjunction with a workshop “Social determinants of migrants’ health across Asia and Europe”, in the following days in Barcelona (8-9 March 2012). Participants at this two-day workshop included individuals from international organisations, governments and civil society institutions. This workshop was part of the Research Exchange Workshop Series organised by the ASEF Public Health Network. The workshop report will be published in the second half of the year, while the research report by Yuchengco Centre and Fondazione ISMU is planned for publication early next year.

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