Use of medical reports


Country Report: Use of medical reports Last updated: 12/05/23


Portuguese Refugee Council Visit Website

The Asylum Act contains a general provision on the right of asylum seekers to submit supporting evidence in the asylum procedure.[1] It further foresees the possibility for SEF to request reports on specific issues from experts (e.g. cultural or medical) during the regular procedure.[2] Nevertheless, there are no specific standards in law or administrative guidance relating to medical reports for those claiming to have been subjected to torture or other serious acts of physical, psychological and sexual violence.

The lack of standard operational procedures regarding the issuance, content and relevance of medical reports in the asylum procedure has been highlighted in the particular case of survivors of torture and/or serious violence.[3] According to the available information, medical reports are currently not issued based on the methodology laid down in the Istanbul Protocol.

According to CPR’s observations in the course of 2022, the procedures and criteria followed by the authorities in order to request medical evaluations (including concerning mental health) were also unclear.




[1] Article 15(2) Asylum Act.

[2] Article 28(3) Asylum Act.

[3] Italian Council for Refugees et al., Time for Needs: Listening, Healing, Protecting, October 2017, available at:

Table of contents

  • Statistics
  • Overview of the legal framework
  • Overview of the main changes since the previous report update
  • Asylum Procedure
  • Reception Conditions
  • Detention of Asylum Seekers
  • Content of International Protection
  • ANNEX I – Transposition of the CEAS in national legislation