Situation of Access to Healthcare Services in Occupied Territories

On May 15, 2017, the Public Defender of Georgia held a working meeting with representatives of various ministries and NGOs and discussed issues relating to availability of healthcare services in the occupied territories, recommendations developed by the Public Defender in this direction and solutions to the problems.

The Public Defender has been studying problems of people living in the occupied territories and regularly reflecting them in his parliamentary and special reports for years. The issues of equipment of medical institutions operating in the occupied territories and retraining of medical personnel, access to healthcare services on the Georgian controlled territory for persons living in the occupied territories, the Zugdidi shelter for victims of violence and the state referral program were discussed at the meeting.

The Public Defender of Georgia has elaborated the following recommendations for the Government of Georgia and the Ministry of Labour, Health and Social Affairs:

  • Children's reanimation department should be opened at the hospital that is being constructed in the village of Rukhi, Zugdidi municipality; a children's ambulance vehicle should be transferred to the region, which will serve children from Abkhazia as well
  • Additional resources should be allocated for the financial and material assistance of medical personnel working in the occupied territory and their professional training; medical facilities operating in the occupied territories should be adequately equipped
  • An ambulance vehicle should be transferred to the Saberio emergency assistance center in the shortest possible time
  • All necessary measures should be taken to help the NGOs serving women, children, victims of violence and others in the occupied territories
  • A shelter for victims of domestic violence should be opened in Zugdidi, which will serve the residents of Abkhazia as well
  • A mechanism should be developed for enrolling Georgian citizens living in the occupied territories in the referral program; amendments to the Government’s Decree on Establishment of Commission for Making Decisions on Provision of Medical Assistance within the framework of Referral Service and Definition of Rules of Actions should be drafted in order to make uniform practice with regard to all citizens living in the occupied territories, regardless of their citizenship, of a compulsory nature.

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