Prosperity and health of Roma women – path towards challenges


Kumanovo, Macedonia, 19 June 2008 – The National Roma Centrum from 1 August 2007 began with implementation of the project “Prosperity and health of Roma women – path towards challenges” with support of the Roma Health Program – Budapest.

The subject of the project and the research is examination of the current condition and priority needs and problems of Roma women in their access to health protection.

Within the framework of the activities filing out questioners by Roma women was conducted. The research was realized in 4 cities in R. M.: Kumanovo, Kriva Palanka, Prilep and Bitola, in order to gain a real image about the level of inclusion of the Roma women as the most marginalized entity in this society in the public health’s agenda.

The methodology of the research was through direct communication (talks) and informing of the surveyed women about the importance of going to a doctor, free PAP tests, obligatory vaccination of children, the risk of hepatitis, asthma and other diseases in order to take appropriate measures for protection of their own health.

Part of the activities of the NRC’s informative center were connected to educating of the female Roma population in these cities, lectures were organized twice a month by expert medical persons for groups composed of 15-20 women. The women had the opportunity to get free legal advice mostly for securing their civil status, services for health protection, health insurance, managing family relations.

Health is a condition of complete physical, mental and social welfare and not just absence of illness or weakness. With raising this issue in public for health protection and condition of the women, with exposing the problems in public, further strategic actions can contribute for towards: 1. understanding and acceptance of this issue by the public and 2. promoting of the access of Roma women to public health services.

The National Roma Centrum calls on all relevant institutions and facilities to support the implementation of the following activities:

Decreasing of differences in order to provide quality health protection of various socio-economic groups. In order to provide a sustainable mechanism for quality health protection for socially endangered families on the principles of equal approach and social solidarity.

The health system and the local self government to stimulate securing of availability of public health institutions in enviorments where Roma population is dominative and have difficulties towards accessing health facilities, with which equal approach will be provided to health protection. To improve or build infrastructure in the Roma settlements.

Revidentation of a positive list of essential medication and medical aids included in the elementary package of health services, especially medication which are being used for treatment of asthma

To implement a multi sector approach: education of the Roma female population and preventive protection.

Social mobilization of the local community in promoting of reproductive health of Roma women and support from the Government for financing of preventive programs. To provide means for continuing of the Program for early detection of malignant neoplasms of the women’s reproductive organs, to provide free examinations for all women at the ages from 19-65, including the Roma female population who are under a social risk to make a PAP test for early discovering of a malignant neoplasm of the uterus of the womb.

Strenghtening of the cooperation and communication, on a local and national levels, between the health sector and Roma civil organizations in promoting and conducting of educational health preventive programs through providing of easily accessible, understandable and precise information about preventive protection through direct work for the Roma female population.

Data have been provided to all present medias and also to those who showed interest for the analyze.

National Roma Centrum
Address:”Done Bozinov 11/5,1300 Kumanovo, Macedonia
Phone/fax:+389 31 427 558
email: info[at]nationalromacentrum[dot]org