Diaspora Engagement in Health in The Eastern Mediterranean Region: A desk review of experiences

Original Language
Number of Pages
Reference Number
Date of upload

27 Jul 2021

Diaspora Engagement in Health in The Eastern Mediterranean Region: A desk review of experiences

This desk review of the medical (or health) diaspora originating from the Eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East and Northern Africa (MENA) region was conducted jointly by the World Health Organization, Eastern Mediterranean Regional Office (WHO/EMRO) and the International Organization for Migration’s (IOM) MENA Regional Office, both in Cairo.

The review starts with a brief overview of the (out)migration of health professionals from their home countries, pointing out the potential to engage these health professionals as members of diaspora communities. It then gives a rundown of government institutions and international organizations dealing with diaspora engagement – both in countries of origin and countries of destination – before enumerating examples of how health professionals have been engaged in MENA and other regions.

The report ends with a brief analysis of how COVID-19 has exacerbated the situation in the MENA region and the even more urgent need to engage with health professionals in the diaspora to meet the needs of overstretched public health systems on the ground.  

  • Foreword
  • Acknowledgements
  • List of figures and tables
  • Abbreviations
  • Introduction 
    • Definitions of diaspora
    • Research objectives and methods
    • The medical diaspora
    • The situation in the countries of the Eastern Mediterranean region
  • Governmental and quasi-governmental institutions dealing with the diaspora
    • Diaspora engagement
    • Diaspora institutions in source countries in the Eastern Mediterranean region
    • Medical diaspora organizations in source countries
    • International organizations and diaspora engagement 
      • UNDP project: Transfer of Knowledge through Expatriate Nationals (TOKTEN) 
    • IOM projects on diaspora engagement
      • IOM cross-country projects
      • IOM country-specific projects
  • Other examples for diaspora engagement from Eastern Mediterranean countries
    • The Sudan
    • Somalia
    • Pakistan
  • The COVID-19 pandemic and diaspora engagement 
  • A global commitment
  • The way forward
  • Bibliography