Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan chaired a consultation, which was held in the Office of Government, to discuss the activities carried out by the Ministry of Healthcare in 2019 as part of the Government’s Action Plan for the period 2019-2023.
Healthcare Minister Arsen Torosyan reported 14 activities implemented in 2019, including the work done to promote a healthy lifestyle, combat the most common diseases, improve the quality of medical services, raise the level of fertility due to health factors, improve access to rehabilitative medical care for children, provide high-quality medical services in the regions and develop e-health systems in Armenia. Arsen Torosyan provided detailed information on the ongoing efforts related to comprehensive health insurance, the development of a draft national tuberculosis management program for 2021-2025, created at the end of 2019, and the revision of the applicable legal acts on drinking water in the Republic of Armenia.
The Minister noted that the National Immunization Program for 2021-2023 is being developed, along with a draft government decree “On approval of the list of priority measures of the National Immunization Program.” The Minister further advised that under a government decree, referred to as N 318-N, dated March 4, 2004, about 400 thousand citizens included in the list of socially disadvantaged and separate (special) groups have benefited from an improved package of hospital medical care since January 2019, including 18 types of latest expensive services. Since January 2020, financing of medical organizations within the framework of the programs “Medical assistance to military personnel, rescuers and their families,” “Obstetric medical care” and “Emergency heart surgery” is carried out on an unlimited budget basis. Public offer agreements were concluded in accordance with the established procedure. Since January 2019, the surgical treatment of patients with malignant neoplasms has been carried out within the framework of the state order, owing to which the rate of applicants has increased by 3.4 times.
Since July 2019, radiotherapy with a 15 MeV medical linear beam accelerator has been carried out entirely within the framework of the state order. This was done on a co-payment basis in the past. 1024 sessions have been performed since the program started. Since April 2020, the threshold for social security to receive the right to medical care and services under public order has been lowered from 30.01 to 28.01. The volume of operations under the state order has increased by 22% as a result of the provision of free emergency heart surgeries.
Control during pregnancy has improved since March 2020. The scope of medical examinations for high-risk pregnant women has expanded, resulting in lower reproductive losses, including cases of miscarriages, intrauterine deaths, stillbirths, maternal and perinatal mortality, congenital malformations of the fetus and will ensure growth a favorable outcome of pregnancy with the birth of a child.
In 2020 a contract was signed with the world’s leading manufacturer of insulin products, the Novo Nordisk A/S Danish pharmaceutical company, thanks to which during 2020-2022 insulin products will be provided to nearly 20 560 insulin-dependent patients registered in Armenia and the Republic of Artsakh.
Since February, 2020, the state has been purchasing 25 drugs for the treatment of children and adolescents suffering from oncohematological diseases, instead of 14 drugs procured in the past. 12 types of oncological drugs have already been purchased and are provided to patients free of charge.
Arsen Torosyan also touched upon the five-year strategy for the development of Armenia’s healthcare system, noting that it is at the stage of development and will soon be presented to the Office of the Prime Minister.
Prime Minister Pashinyan expressed satisfaction with the activities of the Ministry of Healthcare, noting that the problems faced in this area are of strategic importance, and they should be solved by adopting the strategy and implementing the measures envisaged by it. The Premier emphasized the importance of making consistent efforts to improve the primary healthcare system’s efficiency, ensure broader access to medical services and fully implement the electronic healthcare system.
The current epidemiological situation and further work in this direction were discussed during the meeting.