Healthcare centres


people attended our clinics in 2014


of the people seen are in need of urgent care


of patients attending consultations live in squats, slums or on the streets


In France it is becoming increasingly difficult for people with limited financial resources to gain access to care or to exercise their rights.


A desperate situation for the very poorest

More than three million people in France today are affected by poverty – that’s 14.3 % of the population. Since 2008, the proportion of people who are socially and economically vulnerable has continued to rise and social health inequalities are worsening. These indicators demonstrate the difficulties in accessing healthcare for the very poorest in society. In addition, the thresholds set for entitlement to, for example, complementary Universal Health Insurance (CMUinfo-icon-c) and State Medical Aid (AMEinfo-icon) (EUR720 / month) still exclude a large number of people living below the poverty line.

More than three million people in France today are affected by poverty.

Stigmatised migrants

In 2014, vulnerable migrants still account for the majority of patients seen by Doctors of the World. These men, women and children continue to face a particularly repressive migration policy which seeks to discourage them from remaining in France, marginalising them and even putting their lives at risk.

The rise in unaccompanied minors 

Between 2011 and 2014, nine times as many unaccompanied minors as before 2011 attended the Doctors of the World centres. These young people are particularly vulnerable and often completely disempowered when confronted by administrative processes and dysfunctional public services. In the face of such difficulties, they often have no choice but to turn to civil society organisations to meet their basic needs – accommodation, food and medical care.

Consultation pédiatrique au CASO de Lyon © Véronique Burger
Consultation pédiatrique au CASO de Lyon © Véronique Burger

What we do

Since 1986, when its first centre was set up, Doctors of the World has sought to help the most vulnerable. Today 20 healthcare and advice clinics (CASOs) and one paediatric centre provide medical and social assistance. In addition, 49 mobile units operate locally, offering help to the excluded in the places where they live and / or work.

CASO objectives

The aim of the CASOs is to welcome, provide care and advice people who have difficulty in accessing healthcare and to report on and publicise the situation. The CASOs involve multi-disciplinary teams and are open to anyone in difficulty, with no appointment necessary. They see patients without imposing any restrictions, offer tailored medical care for each patient and work with them to ensure they have access to their rights and to mainstream healthcare services.


Those in difficulty can also come for specialist consultations. In addition, some CASOs offer prevention activities and encourage screening for STDs, hepatitis and tuberculosis, with innovative methods being offered (such as rapid screening tests for HIV).


Finally, we provide those attending our clinics with information about their rights and help them with administrative procedures. The majority of patients (90 %) at our centres have no medical insurance at the time of their first consultation, even though they may be entitled to it.

Our healthcare and advice clinics



Indian Ocean

Indian Ocean

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