This article proposes a mobilities-informed approach to social science research on healthcare and migration. It engages with evidence gathered during the Covid-19 pandemic that suggests that when confronted with a public health emergency, health systems can be responsive to the needs of mobile populations. During the Covid-19 lockdowns, health resources shifted routine services online, spurring an acceleration of telemedicine. The roll-out of these practices intersected with the phenomenon of digital exclusion, making healthcare partly or completely out of reach for those who could not connect. We argue that these efforts could have been more successful if they grew out of a recognition of healthcare's ‘sedentary bias’. National health systems are configured to serve settled populations. They are not designed for people on the move, with uncertain residential and immigration status. Yet this bias can be alleviated when health interventions are rethought from the point of view of the mobile patient.


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Follis, L., Follis, K. & Burns, N. 2023, 'Healthcare (im)mobilities and the Covid-19 pandemic: notes on returning to the field', International Journal of Cultural Studies. https://doi.org/10.1177/13678779231173707

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Last updated: 23 May 2023
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