The role of students in a migration crisis in Roraima, Brazil

refugees venezuela

Venezuelans cross the Simon Bolivar International Bridge into the border city of Cúcuta, Colombia, October 2018. © UNHCR/Fabio Cuttica

This article was exclusively written for The European Sting by Ms. Dandara Melo Honorato, a second-year medical student from Federal University of
Roraima in Boa vista, Roraima, Brazil. She is
 affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA), cordial partner of The Sting. The opinions expressed in this piece belong to the writer and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor The European Sting’s one.


While Venezuela faces one of the worst crises in its history, Roraima, a border state located in the extreme north of Brazil, receives its impact; the flow of immigrants in recent years has increased exponentially, and a small, marginalized state is then faced with the responsibility of receiving and welcoming a weakened population, in its majority. In this sense, public opinion is divided: to expel or to host? Xenophobia or empathy? Is the state responsible for giving them the same right to health?

According to the 1988 Constitution, the Sistema Universal de Saúde (SUS), the brazilian heathcare system, is considered universal; its access can not be denied to an individual located in any Federative Unit, as well as foreigners, immigrants or refugees. In addition, it has the principles of equity, to alleviate inequalities, and of integrality, aiming to approach the patient as a whole.

Despite efforts by governments and the UN, Venezuelan immigrants are still helpless, and the governor declared a state of public calamity in health.

One of the perceived problems is the lack of information about immigrant rights to various health services, such as free vaccination. Another barrier is prejudice, which intimidates Venezuelans and is reflected in the bad quality of care. Thus, more comprehensive strategies are required in order to provide them with the right to public health, and in order to allow a better functioning of the services.

In this context, it is the role of the Ministry of Health to promote contact between Health Secretariats, especially between border states, in order to provide information bulletins on the general state of immigrants, in view of the internalization carried out by the Brazilian army. In this way, prevention and care campaigns can be better prepared.

But mainly, so that the immigrants can be aware of their rights to the services, one must occupy public spaces, taking health education to them. In this role, the protagonism of students is highlighted, who mobilized are able to promote partnerships and reach places where the State neglect. Medical students can promote campaigns, in partnership with the health department, to provide basic screening services and inform them with bilingual materials about the functioning of the SUS, and where they should appeal according to the health demand. In addition, they should improve the local medical education with the sensitivity about immigrant care, with symposia and projects, to train more empathic professionals.

In parallel, law students can act offering legal support, with information about documents that facilitate the regularization of their stay in Brazil, which, consequently, would improve access not only to health, but also to other rights that they possess.

Although the migratory scenario in Roraima has reached an alarming level, initiatives such as these are able to alleviate the overload of the state machinery and alleviate the negligence of this type of population, focusing on the artifacts assured by the SUS principles and serving as an example for eventual states.

About the author

Dandara Melo Honorato is a second-year medical student from Federal University of
Roraima in Boa vista, Roraima, Brazil. She is affiliated to the International Federation of
Medical Students Associations (IFMSA Brazil), working as a Local Officer on human Rights and Peace Director (LORP-D). She also dedicates her time to coordinate a volunteer extension project in music teraphy. Besides that, she is motivated to expand her experience in research and publication, focusing on epidemiology and Human Rights.

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

the European Sting Milestones

Featured Stings

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

EU to manage external borders against the will of member states; Greece to be the first target

4 ways 3D printing can revolutionize manufacturing

‘Democratic aspirations of the Sudanese people’ must be met urges Guterres, following military removal of al-Bashir from power

Denmark plans ‘Silicon Valley’ on 9 artificial islands off Copenhagen

Following the World Cup? Then you’re watching high-performing migrants at work

FROM THE FIELD: A UN peacekeepers-eye view of DR Congo

Tech companies could achieve much more by serving the common good. Here’s 3 steps they should take

China in My Suburbs

Here’s how to make ‘value-based healthcare’ a reality

From drone swarms to modified E. Coli: say hello to a new wave of cyberattacks

Czech Babis, Austrian Kurz and others threaten Europe with nationalist populism

Trump systematically upsets global order and trade: Where does this end?

This is why people live, work and stay in a growing city

UN General Assembly President defends ‘landmark’ migration compact

Eurozone: Bank resolution proposal gains wider interest

Yes, together we can make a change! YO!Fest and EYE 2016

The US Congress and European Parliament vote are TTIP’s 10th round’s lucky cards

Madagascar: UN chief commends leaders, State institutions following ‘historic milestone’ election

No hard drivers in sight to remodel the stagnating affairs of the EU

Why feeding the planet doesn’t have to mean sacrificing our forests

Climate action: 4 shifts the UN chief encourages Governments to make

Main results of EU-Japan summit: Tokyo, 17/07/2018

Cultural Intelligence: the importance of changing perspectives

Special measures for Greece: 100% absorption rate

Poverty and social exclusion skyrocket with austerity

Child victims of DRC Ebola outbreak need ‘special attention and care’: UNICEF

Eating less beef and more beans would cut deaths by 5-7%

Ahead of street protests, UN rights chief urges Guatemalan Government to respect democratic freedoms

1st Exclusive High Level Dialogue: China-EU Cybersecurity and 5G Cooperation

Hungary has made progress on greening its economy and now needs to raise its ambitions

The Dead Sea is drying up, and these two countries have a plan to save it

Stateless Rohingya refugee children living in ‘untenable situation’, UNICEF chief

IQ scores have been falling for decades, new study finds

Darfur peace process at a ‘standstill’ as demonstrations against Sudanese Government continue

From Sweden to India, School climate strikes have gone global

Refugee crisis update: Commission is struggling alone with little help from EU or G7 leaders

German opposition win in Lower Saxony felt all over Europe

What is adversarial artificial intelligence and why does it matter?

Brazilian public health system and universality: a forgotten right!

‘Never give up’: UN chief urges all who serve, marking UN Day

TTIP wins Merkel’s endorsement ahead of 2016 tough deadline

Who should pay for workers to be reskilled?

EU voters not interested in the European Parliament elections. What’s behind this European Titanic?

UK must end ‘unlawful’ administration of Chagos Archipelago ‘as rapidly as possible,’ top UN court rules

MWC 2016 LIVE: Verizon boasts momentum for IoT platform

Students in Milan are moving in with the elderly to fight loneliness and save money

Three countries losing ground and one new prime minister

German banks suffer of nausea amidst rough seas

These are the world’s most fragile states in 2019

Scientists have created the world’s ‘first psychopath AI’

Theresa May’s global Britain against Philip Hammond’s Brexit fog

Guterres says UN stands ready to support Brazil’s search and rescue effort in wake of tragic dam collapse

Vegans in France are using extreme tactics to stop people eating meat

Stronger European Border and Coast Guard to secure EU’s borders

India can soar in the robot age. This is how

David Attenborough: The planet can’t cope with overpopulation

Beyond self-regulation: dealing with Europe’s consumption problem

European Court rules that ECB’s OMT program of 2012 is OK; not a word from Germany about returning the Greek 2010 courtesy

Silk Road Unlimited

Migration crisis update: What are the chances of a fair deal at this EU Summit?

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s