Illegal immigrants to regain rights to healthcare in Spain

Image of Francisco de la Torre, the mayor of Malaga, presenting the new hybrid buses. Credit: [email protected]

PRIME MINISTER Mariano Rajoy said that Spain would restore free primary healthcare to undocumented migrants in Spain. This reverses a decision made in 2012 that stated that foreigners lacking residency papers would only receive free treatment in the case of an emergency, or during pregnancy and labour.

The Spanish government was severely criticised for implementing the law which refused healthcare to illegal immigrants three years ago. Many human rights groups including Amnesty international said that the law broke many existing international acts.

A report made in 2013 concluded that more 800,000 people had lost access to care, with terrible consequences. 

Giving his reason for the policy U-turn, Prime Minister Rajoy told a news conference on Tuesday: “It seems more sensible and more reasonable for primary healthcare to be carried out in health centres so that, among other things, emergency centres are not overwhelmed.”

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