Greece has been the gateway to Europe for hundreds of thousands of refugees and migrants, many of whom have made extremely dangerous crossings by boat to the Greek islands. As Greece deals with the consequences of its own economic crisis, the Government’s capacity to deal with the large numbers of new arrivals has been stretched to breaking point.
After the closure of the border with the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and the EU agreeing a resettlement deal with Turkey in March, the future for those seeking refuge elsewhere in Europe remains highly uncertain. Tens of thousands people are trapped in limbo in dozens of camps across the islands and mainland. Many are living in extremely poor conditions: overcrowded, unsanitary camps and inadequate healthcare provision all present significant hazards for migrants’ wellbeing.
People here have travelled far beyond breaking point on journeys they never wanted to undertake. Many have bullet wounds: all have lost homes, families, friends, and certainties.
Dr Andrew Moscop, Doctors of the World volunteer
Doctors of the World has been working in Greece since 1990 and today medics provide medical care in many of the camps where refugees remain stranded including Oreokastro, Diavata and Katsikas as well as clinics on the islands of Chios and Lesbos.
In Athens, Doctors of the World Greece runs a polyclinic for both refugees and Greek people who do not have health insurance as well as a clinic in the Elliniko baseball stadium which houses many refugees.
Doctors of the World UK also runs a mobile unit in partnership with Help Refugees, giving us the capacity to set up a fully-functioning clinic wherever need is greatest.