Doctors of the World have launched a website to help refugees find free healthcare. The ClinicFinder website is the first of its kind: a mobile-web application to provide simple and clear information about free primary healthcare and medical services for refugees and migrants across Europe.
“A difficult journey is made dangerous when people have no idea where they can get help when they need it,” says Gareth Walker, Doctors of the World's International Programme Manager.
“ClinicFinder is designed with vulnerable refugees in mind, providing a resource for them to find the free medical help that the European public has made available.”
The website, designed by Daniel Yu, CEO of Reliefwatch, uses GPS location to show on a map the nearest free health clinics and what services can be accessed. It allows refugees to search by location (e.g. Berlin, Athens) and by specific service required (e.g. children, survivor of violence), and it can also be used as a clinic directory for health professionals.
Language options currently include English, Arabic, Farsi and French. “Like many people, I watched in horror as the refugee crisis in Europe deepened in 2015 and knew that I needed to do something," says Yu. “My hope is that ClinicFinder becomes a vital extra tool for the refugees to access healthcare wherever they are or are heading to.”
There are already over 70 health clinics in 16 countries mapped on ClinicFinder, and the site encourages people to add the locations of other eligible clinics (free to access, non-government provided) so the number is expected to grow substantially.
ClinicFinder was developed after Doctors of the World UK approached TechFugees, a tech community initiative focussing on solutions to help refugees, and were introduced to Daniel Yu who has donated his time and expertise to support the project.
Doctors of the World is reaching out to organisations and health professionals helping refugees across Europe and encouraging them to show their patients the website and explain how it can help them as they continue their journey.
“It is a map of humanitarian effort, and deserves to be shared as widely as possible.” says Walker. “There's a huge potential for this website to become a global resource for healthcare access information.”
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