What does SAPPIR mean?

SAPPIR (Psychopathological and Psychosocial Care Service for Immigrants and Refugees) is an institution specialised in helping immigrants, especially those who live in extreme situations.


  • To sensitise society on immigration
  • To offer specialised attention schools, NGOs, associations and social services
  • To promote collaboration between health professionals and social sciences
  • To offer an interdisciplinary and open forum, reflection and debate
  • To favour the networking between immigrants and care networks and with community

What is the user profile of this center?

During more than 25 years of SAPPIR work, several thousand people have been treated who had to emigrate because of different historical events and situations:

  • the dollarization crisis in Ecuador and Peru (1990s)
  • the war of the ex-Yugoslavia (years ’90)
  • the wars after the disappearance of the USSR
  • the corralito of Argentina (years’ 2000)
  • the arrival of the boats (since 2000)
  • the economic crisis that has had a terrible impact on the standard of living and the integration of immigrants (since 2008)
  • Syrian refugees (since 2016)
  • the increase in the arrival of unaccompanied minors

When was founded?

The centre was founded in 1994 by Dr Achotegui and is located in the Hospital of Sant Pere Claver, in the area of the Port of Barcelona, next to the slope of the mountain of Montjuïc, a traditional place of arrival of immigrants to the city. The Hospital of Sant Pere Claver was founded by the Jesuits in the 50s to serve the population in difficult situation in that area.

Why did the SAPPIR arise?

The SAPPIR emerges as a continuation of the research on migration and mental health developed by Drs. Jordi Font and Jorge Tizón, Joseba Achotegui, Paco Sainz, among others, in the 80s in the Fundació Vidal i Barraquer.

The centre was born within the framework of the GASIR Project (Group of Health Assistance to Immigrants and Refugees) that was founded in 1991 and of which Josep Ballester, Lluís Recolons, Fransesc Vilurbina, Jordi Font, Carles Ballús, Ramón Balaguer, Pepa Picas and Joseba Achotegui are members.

What other activities does this association develop?

The SAPPIR, in addition to developing an intense activity in the healthcare area, is also dedicated to the area of research (with a large number of publications) and the area of teaching (intervening in numerous training activities).

What professionals of the mental health area does it have?

The SAPPIR has counted in these 25 years of work with the activity of great professionals such as María Isabel Calvo, Alejandra Carrasco, Dori Espeso, Nuria Pellejero, Claire Bouillet, Yolanda Osorio, Salvatore Cosentino and Eva Marxen.

In the more than 25 years of SAPPIR work, he has had the decisive support of the Hospital Management of Sant Pere Claver, doctors David Clusa, Carles Descalzi, Afred Moreno, Josep Ballester, Fransesc Vilurbina, Carme Cosp, Pere Benito, others.

For more details, visit the official SAPPIR website

(Web in Catalan)

For more details, visit the official SAPPIR website

(Web in Catalan)