Since 2014, IOM Nepal has started to work on Migration Health. In 2014 and 2015, a regional IOM Development Fund funded project “Strengthening Government’s Capacity of Selected South Asian Countries to Address the Health of Migrants through a Multi-Sector Approach” was implemented. As part of the project, advocacy meetings were conducted with various ministries and stakeholders, and some government officials participated in to the regional consultation held on 4-5 March 2015 in Dhaka, Bangladesh, and a baseline assessment on health vulnerabilities of migrants was conducted. Likewise, IOM Nepal implemented another IDF project namely “Promoting and Integrating Inclusive and Migrant Friendly Health Assessment Services in the National Health Sys-tem of Sri Lanka”. A rapid assessment was conducted on Migration Health Screening Services in Nepal and findings were shared with concerned ministries and stakeholders. The recommendation of this is to develop a national guideline on Migration Health Assessment Services. Since migration health policy is non-existence in Nepal, there is a need of developing a holistic National Strategic Action Plan (NSAP) to address health needs of outbound, internal and inbound migrants.
At present, IOM is implementing another IDF project entitled “Strengthening Government Capacity in the Development and Implementation of the National Strategic Action Plan on Migration Health in Nepal” with the main objective of strengthening the capacity of the Government of Nepal to address the health needs of inbound and outbound migrants by developing, endorsing and implementing the National Strategic Action Plan (NSAP) on Migration Health. More specifically, throughout the duration of the project IOM Nepal supports the Ministry of Health to develop and endorse the NSAP on Migration Health (MoH), which will assist in comprehensively addressing health vulnerabilities of migrants and protect their right to health. Additionally, IOM Nepal assists the GoN in enhancing its capacity to successfully implement selected activities further outlined in the NSAP, such as developing a national pre-departure health assessment guideline for health centers conducting assessment of migrants going for foreign employment, research on the health vulnerabilities of cross-border migrants from Nepal, support in the establishment of an inter-ministerial coordination mechanism – including a migration health secretariat and focal points in MoH and Ministry of Labour and Employment, and so forth.
In addition, IOM Nepal supports the government in developing a National Migration Health Policy aimed at promoting the health of migrants and address the health-related issues and challenges faced during the migration process.