EL PASO, Texas (Border Report) – Doctors affiliated with the UN’s International Organization for Migration will be providing free medical services seven days a week inside one of Juarez’s largest migrant shelters.
City of Juarez employees are already setting up examination and office space for the doctors at the Kiki Romero gym, said Santiago Gonzalez Reyes, head of the city’s Human Rights Office.
“We have been setting up little by little thanks to the support of citizens and community organizations. We already have the examination table, medical equipment, and medication available so that the physicians can provide quality services” to the migrants, Gonzalez said.
The OIM physicians will be at the shelter in the afternoons Monday through Sunday.
The doctors were previously based at the old Flamingo Hotel in north Juarez, which served as a “filter” or quarantine facility for newly arrived migrants at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. The “filter” hotel closed on Dec. 31 after providing medical services for more than 3,600 migrants during its two-and-a-half-year run.
Given the large number of migrants from all over the world waiting in Juarez for a chance to cross into the United States, local officials and the OIM worked out a deal so that the 11 doctors and registered nurses could stay and regularly visit shelters.
Kiki Romero, named after a legendary Juarez sports promoter and basketball coach, on Tuesday housed 180 migrants and was at 90 percent capacity, Gonzalez said.
The city official said migrants staying for the long run often are shuffled to the larger Leona Vicario federal government shelter.