A group discussion with community leaders and representatives of migrant populations of Caritas Casablanca in the offices of IOM Morocco | Photo: IOM Morocco
A group discussion with community leaders and representatives of migrant populations of Caritas Casablanca in the offices of IOM Morocco | Photo: IOM Morocco

A reported 52% of migrants in Morocco did not have access to the vaccine against COVID-19. Out of that percentage, 70% refused to get vaccinated while the remaining 30% wanted a vaccine but couldn't obtain it, a survey carried out by the International Organization for Migration in Morocco shows.

A reported 52% of migrants in Morocco did not have access to the vaccine against COVID-19, IOM Morocco has said. Out of that percentage, 70% refused to get vaccinated while the remaining 30% wanted a vaccine but couldn't obtain it. Among those who refused the vaccine, 36% said their decision was due to concern for possible collateral effects while 21% said they did not have enough information on vaccines.

The data emerged from a survey carried out by IOM (International Organization for Migration) Morocco between February and March 2022, as part of the regional project 'Favoring the health and protection of migrants in situations of vulnerability' in Morocco, Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Yemen and Sudan.

The project was funded by the foreign ministry of Finland. It was launched in 2015 and has now reached the third phase of implementation (August 2020-May 2023) with a budget of €3.5 million.

IOM Morocco supported 795 migrants infected with Omicron variant

IOM Morocco explained that the results of the survey allowed to better understand the behavior of migrants regarding immunization against COVID-19 and to also adapt the awareness campaign promoted by IOM and its partners in the country.

As part of the regional project, IOM Morocco reportedly supported 795 migrants, including 364 women, infected during the peak of the Omicron variant, with direct assistance through financial support to four organizations of civil society.

In this context, the investigation was carried out with questionnaires that were distributed to 113 migrants.

Awareness campaigns launched on different health issues

Moreover, IOM Morocco led awareness campaigns aimed at migrant populations on different health issues, in partnership with two organizations of civil society -- the Moroccan association of family planning (AMPF) in Casablanca and the Association to fight Aids (ALCS) in Agadir.

A campaign promoted by ALCS from January to June 2022 concerned prevention, identification and treatment of the HIV virus and involved more than 2,500 migrants, half of whom were women, the IOM said.

IOM Morocco gives financial support to ALCS and AMPF to provide medical, psychosocial and humanitarian assistance to migrants.

Survey on living conditions and access to treatment of migrants in seven cities

Finally, IOM Morocco contributed to the realization of a survey on migrants' health in seven cities of the country: Rabat, Casablanca, Agadir, Fès, Tangiers, Nador and Oujda.

Launched in March 2022 by the ministry of health and civil protection and ONUSIDA, the study focused on a sample of 2,000 migrants and allowed to collect data on issues such as living conditions, access to treatment, stigmatization and discrimination.

Moreover, the survey allowed to update the prevalence of cases of HIV, tuberculosis, syphilis and hepatitis C among migrants. The results of the survey will reportedly be used to guide the current and future programs of IOM Morocco in order to respond to the needs of migrant populations.

 

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