How MSF is fighting COVID-19 in Belgium
Since November 2020, in the center of Brussels, MSF has been providing shelter and medical care to homeless patients who are COVID-19 positive or are likely to be so. These vulnerable people are offered a safe space to isolate themselves, to be medically monitored, and to be referred for appropriate care if needed.
An outreach team also provides support to people who are staying in abandoned buildings and informal settlements, offering screening and medical follow-up. This team also provides health promotion, infection prevention and control guidance, contact tracing, and psychological support.
The situation for migrants and asylum seekers in Belgium worsens every year, due to restrictive policies that make access to basic health care very difficult. Learn how you can best help in Belgium and other countries.
In 2019, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières continued to play a key role, alongside six other organizations, in running a ‘humanitarian hub’ in Brussels. This is a place where migrants and asylum seekers can find services that are not available to them elsewhere in the city, such as medical and mental health care and socio-legal advice, as well as assistance with family tracing and clothing. Many migrants and asylum seekers make use of these services, and overall the hub receives around 50,000 visits each year.
Our intervention operates on two levels. In the hub itself, we provide psychological support to people who need it, and at another site nearby, we offer more specialized care through psychologists or psychiatrists for those with more acute needs. Please donate to support our work in Belgium and other countries around the world now.
After ending our activities in several reception centers managed by the Belgian authorities in December 2018, we shared with other organizations the tools and approaches developed during this pilot project, such as specially adapted psychosocial and mental health modules. This was part of our effort to push for improved access to psychosocial support for vulnerable migrants and asylum seekers.