Migration Health Assessments are among the most well-established migration management services offered by IOM. They consist of an evaluation of the physical and mental health status of migrants for the purpose of resettlement, international employment, and enrolment in specific migrant assistance programmes, or for obtaining a temporary or permanent visa. There is a diverse range of assessment requirements reflecting national differences in immigration and public policies and practices. The most common denominator is the need to ensure that the migration process does not endanger the health of the migrant or the host population. The purpose of the health assessments is to identify and address conditions of public health concern in order to mitigate the impact of the migrants’ disease burden on national health or social services. The programme also seeks to address the migrants’ specific health needs in order to facilitate integration with the host community. 

Health assessments are valuable in the migration process. Migrants benefit from the health assessment by becoming more aware of their own personal health conditions and by being empowered to take preventative or curative actions. Migration health assessments contribute substantially to addressing the health needs of migrants and of hosting communities alike, particularly when supported by adequate pre- and post-arrival health services and community-based interventions. These measures can also promote positive health-seeking behaviors through pre-departure health education and awareness campaigns. 

With the migrant’s consent, health-care providers at the receiving community level can obtain information on individual conditions that require follow-up treatment or specialized investigation, so they are better prepared to receive and provide relevant services. 

In the context of health assessments, IOM in North Macedonia provides many complementary travel and integra­tion-oriented health promotion services, including treatment, counselling, health education, immunization, and medical escorts. 

Depending on the type of migrant and country-specific guidelines, a migration health assessment may include some or all of the following components: 

  • Review of medical and immunization history 
  • Detailed physical examination and mental health evaluation 
  • Cinical or laboratory investigations 
  • Serological tests 
  • Radiological screening 
  • Chemical analysis (blood/urine) 
  • Referral or consultation with a specialist 
  • Anti-fraud and corruption measures including for services such as DNA testing 
  • Health education 
  • HIV/AIDS counselling 
  • Detailed documentation of findings 
  • Preparation of required immigration health forms and documents 
  • Confidential transfer of relevant information or documentation to appropriate immigration or public health authorities 
  • Ensuring fitness to travel 
  • Public health surveillance and outbreak 
  • Management in camps, transit centres and other temporary settlements 
  • Provision of medical escorts/special 
  • Collection and analysis of data. 

The detection of pulmonary tuberculosis is one of the main foci for the migration health assessment process. The disease’s natural history and mode of transmission, which are strongly influenced by social and environmental factors, make it one of the most important infectious diseases in the context of migration. IOM has established agreements with public health institutions and migrants are referred to healthcare providers who adhere to international standards of care.