Tapachula (Chiapas) and Tenosique (Tabasco) are the main receiving cities for migrants on the southern border of Mexico. 2021 saw record breaking numbers of migrants entering Mexico through the southern border according to the Mexican Commission for Refugee Assistance (COMAR), which reported 89,636 applications for recognition of refugee status in Tapachula and 7,153 applications in Tabasco . However, the National Migration Institute (INM) reported only 19,273 foreigners documented as permanent residents for refugee recognition throughout the country . In parallel, the INM granted 87,174 Visitor Cards for Humanitarian Reasons (TVRH) during 2021, of which 20,364 were issued in Chiapas and 1,499 in Tabasco, mainly for humanitarian causes, offended person, victim or witness of crime, and applicants for refugee status.
Access to health services shows a differentiated behavior between cities because migrants in Tapachula receive care mainly in government health centers while, in Tenosique, NGOs are the main means of accessing medical services. On the other hand, the main obstacles that people who were unable to access medical services in both cities reported facing were lack of information and lack of money.