Human Rights Watch: Armenia’s new strategy to help those in pain

Armenia is taking an important step towards ending the suffering of cancer patients, Giorgi Gogia, Human Right Watch Director for South Caucasus, Europe and Central Asia Division, has said.

“The government recently adopted a national strategy to introduce palliative care services, which focuses on treating pain and other physical symptoms, and provides psychosocial support for people with life-limiting illnesses. The strategy specifies reforms in policy, education, and medicines’ availability, and designates the responsible state institutions,” he said.

The strategy recognizes the need to amend regulations restricting access to pain relief medications, and the government plans to review them in 2018. But thousands of cancer patients in Armenia have waited long enough.

“Armenian authorities should urgently overhaul the regulations and promptly take the necessary steps to ensure that cancer patients can get the pain treatment they need – and to which they have the right,” Giorgi Gogia noted.

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