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Public health services proposed for undocumented aliens

A report commissioned by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health proposes that public healthcare services be made available to undocumented aliens. If implemented, the State would reimburse local governments for extra costs incurred.

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The working group that produced the report examined healthcare issues in regard to people in the country without residence rights or health insurance. According to the study, it is estimated that the number of undocumented aliens in Finland is around 3,500 individuals.

The report concludes that the best care model would be one providing undocumented aliens the same basic healthcare services as are available to citizens. This would also meet constitutional requirements and Finland’s commitments under international human rights agreements.

A less favoured alternative by working group members, but contained in the report, is to provide the same services as are guaranteed to asylum seekers arriving in the country. Under current law, this would mean access to emergency care, and full care for those under the age of 18, as well as pregnant women and new mothers.

If adopted, the system would apply the same fees as are charged to local residents. Any other costs would be carried by the State.

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