Session of 28 novembre 2023

Ensuring access to healthcare and equal treatment for all

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Press Release from the French National Academy of Medicine

“Ensuring access to healthcare and equal treatment for all”.


A press release expresses the official position of the French National Academy of Medicine.

At its session on Tuesday 28 November 2023, the Academy adopted the text of this press release by 70 votes in favor, 7 votes against and 8 abstentions.

The State Medical Aid (Aide Médicale d’Etat, AME) system offers health protection to illegal immigrants present on the French territory for at least 3 months under conditions of low income. The AME follows the principle that guides our ethics as doctors, namely the duty to take care of any patient, regardless of his/her situation, whether legal or not. This system aims to prevent the need for hospitalization in the event of illness worsening that can be treated on an outpatient basis, and also to prevent the risk of transmission of contagious diseases.

The sustainability of this scheme is being discussed within the framework of the immigration law currently under review by the Parliament. In this context, the French National Academy of Medicine (ANM) wishes to reaffirm its recommendations issued in 2017 in favor of facilitating procedures for access to healthcare for people in precarious situations (1). In 2020, the ANM proposed the creation of a truly universal health protection system combining the AME and the Universal Health Protection (PUMA, “Protection Universelle Maladie”), guaranteeing access to healthcare for anyone residing in France (2).

The ANM reaffirms its opposition to any restriction of the scope of health care implying an artificial distinction between urgent and non-urgent care.

– Commission XIV (Déterminants de santé — Prévention — Environnement). Bull. Acad. Natle Méd., 2017, 201, 567-587, voted at the meeting of June 20, 2017.

– Immigration in France: health and social situation. Bull. Acad. Natle Méd., 2020, 204, 4-5-6, 455-469, voted at the meeting of February 25, 2020.


Press Contact : Virginie Gustin +33 (0)6 62 52 43 42

ACADÉMIE NATIONALE DE MÉDECINE, 16 rue Bonaparte – 75272 Paris cedex 06

Site : / Twitter : @Acadmed

Bull Acad Natl Med 2024;208:145. Doi : 10.1016/j.banm.2023.12.012