BiH – contribution to UNHCR for health care for refugees and migrants

Project completed

About 5’000 migrants/refugees are currently residing in Bosnia and Hercegovina (BiH). They are stranded on their way to Western Europe. Many of them are malnourished, have injuries or diseases contracted during the journey. Some also suffer from chronic diseases and mental health problems. Switzerland supports around 1’000 migrants/refugees in providing them access to health care. This will improve health conditions of the migrants/refugees and prevent the spreading of diseases impacting on residents of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Forced displacement (refugees, IDP, human trafficking)
01.01.2018 - 31.12.2019
CHF  200’000
Background Since January 2018, over 23’000 migrants and refugees have been registered in BiH.  The country’s health care system lacks both the financial means and the manpower to cope with the additional health needs. In addition, 90% of migrants are not entitled to get free of charge health care as they have not registered their asylum claim in BiH. Health status is potentially deteriorating in the winter months as accommodation is not properly equipped or not existing. All in all a significant number of persons staying in formal and informal shelters, without access to sanitation and hygiene, are under constant risk of communicable diseases. These diseases can potentially also spread over to the regular population which needs to be prevented.
Objectives Health conditions of migrants and refugees have improved and spreading of communicable diseases amongst refugees/migrants and to the citizens of the host communities is prevented.
Target groups
  • Refugees and migrants
  • Health care centers and their workers
  • Citizens of host communiites
Medium-term outcomes Primary healthcare centres, supported by UNHCR and affiliated NGOs, provide adequate health services, including referral to and provision of secondary health care to migrants and refugees resding in BiH.

Expected results:  

  • Access to required health care provided for at least 1’000 persons through local health care institutions (primary health centers and hospitals), including regular health screening, transport and escorting of persons in need of health care interventions.
  • Capacities of local health care professionals improved for dealing with migrants and vulnerable groups of different ethnic backgrounds.
  • Medical equipment and premises, medicines and/or one vehicle provided for the treatment of migrants, enabling uninterrupted provision of health care for all including local population.

Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Credit area Humanitarian aid
Project partners Contract partner
United Nations Organization (UNO)
  • Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees

Coordination with other projects and actors This is Switzerland’s second humanitarian intervention in 2018 focusing on health challenges for migrants in entire BiH thus complementing the project granting safe drinking water for the migrants residing in the Sedra Hotel. Switzerland through its Migration Partnership with BiH is an important partner in the area of migration management. The Swiss supported health interventions are also intervening in the municipalities where most refugees/migrants are stranded. This allows for secondary monitoring.
Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF    200’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF    200’000 Total project since first phase Budget inclusive project partner CHF   200’000
Project phases

Phase 24 01.01.2018 - 31.12.2019   (Completed)

Phase 22 01.01.2018 - 31.12.2019   (Completed) Phase 17 01.01.2017 - 31.12.2017   (Completed) Phase 16 01.01.2017 - 31.12.2017   (Completed) Phase 15 01.01.2017 - 31.12.2017   (Completed) Phase 14 01.01.2017 - 31.12.2017   (Completed) Phase 12 01.01.2016 - 31.12.2016   (Completed) Phase 11 01.01.2016 - 31.12.2016   (Completed) Phase 10 01.01.2016 - 31.12.2016   (Completed) Phase 9 01.01.2016 - 31.12.2016   (Completed) Phase 8 01.01.2016 - 31.12.2016   (Completed) Phase 7 01.01.2016 - 31.12.2016   (Completed) Phase 6 01.01.2015 - 31.12.2015   (Completed) Phase 5 01.01.2015 - 31.12.2015   (Completed) Phase 3 01.01.2015 - 31.12.2015   (Completed) Phase 2 01.01.2015 - 31.12.2015   (Completed) Phase 1 01.01.2015 - 31.12.2015   (Completed)