Cost of exclusion from healthcare – The case of migrants in an irregular situation – Summary

The right to health is a basic social right. However, its understanding and application differs
across the European Union (EU) Member States, which results in different healthcare services
being offered to migrants in an irregular situation. This summary looks into the potential costs of providing migrants in
an irregular situation with timely access to health screening and treatment, compared to
providing medical treatment only in emergency cases.

The report presents a model to calculate the costs for two medical conditions: hypertension and prenatal care. FRA applied the model to three EU Member States: Germany, Greece and Sweden. Although results must be interpreted with caution, the testing shows that providing access to regular preventive healthcare for migrants in an irregular situation would be cost-saving for healthcare systems. Treating a condition only when it becomes an emergency not only endangers the health of a patient, but also results in a greater economic burden to healthcare systems.