Only a few days to go: We’re raising £25,000 to keep TheyWorkForYou running and make sure people across the UK can hold their elected representatives to account.

Donate to our crowdfunder

Asylum Seekers/Immigration

Home Department written question – answered on 29th April 2004.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Ian Gibson Ian Gibson Labour, Norwich North

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department

(1) what medical assessments are conducted on asylum seekers prior to dispersal within the UK, and if he will make a statement;

(2) what provision is made for continuing HIV treatment for existing HIV patients in the immigrant population following dispersal;

(3) what plans he has to assess the system of dispersal for asylum seekers suffering from HIV.

Photo of Des Browne Des Browne Minister of State (Citizenship, Immigration and Counter-Terrorism), Home Office, Minister of State (Home Office) (Citizenship, Immigration and Nationality)

In assessing suitability for dispersal the National Asylum Support Service (NASS) takes account of all known facts. Some health needs are identified when the application for NASS support is being completed. In addition, those asylum seekers who go through Induction Centres are given the opportunity to have a health assessment. This does not automatically include screening for HIV/AIDS but an asylum seeker who believes he may be at risk may opt to have tests conducted.

Asylum seekers known to be HIV positive are dispersed to areas where relevant treatment is available. In line with standard practice for all MASS dispersals, MASS informs the relevant Primary Care Trust of the asylum seeker's arrival in their area. MASS outreach staff visit asylum seekers shortly after their arrival to ensure that they have access to all services, including health services. Accommodation providers and voluntary sector "one-stop" services can also assist newly dispersed asylum seekers to access services including registering with a GP. Asylum seekers who have undergone a health assessment prior to dispersal are in possession of hand held medical records which they can pass to their GP.

These policies and practices are being considered as part of a short external review which is expected to report to Ministers in the Summer.

Does this answer the above question?

Yes1 person thinks so

No0 people think not

Would you like to ask a question like this yourself? Use our Freedom of Information site.