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Call to reduce medical risks to refugees on repatriation

In a commentary article published this week in International Journal for Equity in Health, Siroos Mirzaei and co-authors call for medical professionals involved in the repatriation of refugees to institute preventative measures to minimize the possible medical and psychological complications that may result from their repatriation.

Austria generally accepts that traumatized refugees, especially those suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder should not be subjected to forced repatriation, but this is not the case with all western countries.

"Because of the immobilization of refugees during flight and the general risk of dehydration, measures should be undertaken to prevent limb thrombosis," write the authors. In addition they suggest that the level of oxygen in the refugees' blood should be tested, to check whether they would benefit from the provision of supplementary oxygen.

The authors also highlight the possible transmission of respiratory infections, such as tuberculosis, from refugees, especially during flights of longer than eight hours.


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Contact: Gemma Bradley
press@biomedcentral.com
44-207-323-0323
BioMed Central
31-Oct-2003


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