FROM THE FIELD: How refugees are helping overwhelmed health systems' COVID-19 response

27 April 2020

With many European health services struggling to deal with an influx of COVID-19 patients, many refugees and migrants with experience in the sector, are being drafted in to help respond to the crisis. 

The Mobile Emergency and Resuscitation Service (SMUR) is on the front line in the fight against coronavirus, by Centre hospitalier d’Argenteuil.

Refugee workers are often delayed from being able to join the labour force in Europe despite having expertise, because the diplomas and certificates they received in their home countries are not recognized. But a recently adopted scheme to fast-track acceptance of their qualifications, is making it easier for highly regulated health services to take advantage of their skills.

Yasin, a doctor from Somalia, and Mohamed, a medic from Libya, both fled violence in their home countries and are now in France, working alongside other health professionals in the fight against COVID-19. Find out more about Mohamed’s experience, and Yasin’s inspirational journey from sleeping rough in Paris, to founding an NGO, here.

And learn here how the European Qualifications Passport for Refugees is making it easier for refugees like them. to work and contribute to European health services.


♦ Receive daily updates directly in your inbox - Subscribe here to a topic.
♦ Download the UN News app for your iOS or Android devices.

News Tracker: Past Stories on This Issue

FROM THE FIELD: ‘Green practices’ boost blue economy

The introduction of “green” or sustainable practices supported by the UN Development Programme (UNDP) is helping the “blue economy” of an Indian Ocean archipelago to thrive.

FROM THE FIELD: The UN’s global fight against COVID-19

A global effort is needed now and in the months ahead, to fight the coronavirus or COVID-19 pandemic, according to the United Nations, and the organization is demonstrating how cooperation in all corners of the world is helping lessen the effects of the virus on the most vulnerable.