1-2 October 2009 | Madrid, Spain

Representatives of seven countries (Bulgaria, Slovakia, Spain, Greece, Portugal, Czech Republic and Romania) celebrated in Madrid the International Seminar on “Health and the Roma Community. Analysis of the Situation in Europe” on the 1st and 2nd of October, at the Ministry of Health and Social Policy.

The data obtained through the 7,604 interviews made to Roma adults and youth in participating countries indicated manifest inequalities in relation to the general population, both in its health and its access to health services. In order to reduce these inequalities, the fundamental recommendations underline the need to address the social determinants of Roma health, the circumstances under which persons are born, grow, work and age. In this sense, the proposals presented by speakers emphasised the need to plan and implement health policies as part of an integrated approach that includes all psycho-social aspects that facilitate access to fundamental rights, through indicators that help to evaluate the effectiveness and impact of policy initiatives. Pointing out that the health situation of the Roma is not simply a domestic issue but part of transnational processes of change, the speakers urged the EU to take a leadership role for the improvement the health situation of the Roma.

The project “Health and the Roma Community. Analysis of the Situation in Europe” was initiated in 2007, aimed at analysing the health situation of the Roma community, at addressing health inequalities and at designing, on the basis of the knowledge acquired, policies and actions that achieve equity in health with the participation of the Roma community.

This project was financed by the EU and developed in seven countries: Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Greece, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia and Spain, replicating the Spanish National Survey on the health situation of the Roma produced in 2006.

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