the monitoring visit of Vardenis Neuropsychological Social-Care Home SNCO of
the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs of Armenia, the experts of the National
Prevention Mechanism of the Office of the Human Rights Defender identified a
number of issues, which were thoroughly analyzed.
particular, the following main issues were registered:
social-care home is overcrowded, the living space necessary for the personal
space of the patients is not preserved: the rooms are overfilled with beds, violating the right to privacy of the patients;
medical supplies and materials for laboratory tests were found;
is a shortage of medications, including psychotropic medications;
medications were stored in unauthorized conditions;
are very few psychiatrists (450 trustees are served by one psychiatrist). This is absolutely
records are kept on an inadmissible basis;
of the order of restraint were registered, the logs are not handled properly; injuries
received by the patients or a person exercising restraint, as well the
information on the effectiveness of the restraint is not properly recorded. Physical
restraint is traumatic and ineffective, it is often performed in rooms in the
presence of other caregivers, etc.;
departments need renovation, room conditions
are poor (mattresses are not suitable for beds, lack or absence of sideboards,
related to the personalization of clothes have been registered. After the
laundry, the cloths belonging to persons with mental health issues who cannot
personalize them are distributed randomly.
bathrooms of some departments of the social-care home are in serious need of
conditions of the baths (lack of showers) have been registered in the
departments of the social-care home, there is an urgent need to repair them;
are no accommodations in the social-care home: The entrances of the departments
are not provided with ramps, as a result, patients with mobility issues have
difficulties to access to bathrooms and complications during recess.
is a need for additional equipment in the canteens of the departments (the patient
had to hold the meal with the plate in his hands because he did not have access
to the table),
there is a need for renovation in the
canteens of the departments,
related to the informed consent were registered: the patients do not submit an
informed consent and are not properly informed about their rights;
trusteeship institution does not function properly, proper control over the
actions of trustees for the benefit of the patients is not exercised;
is a need to provide entertainment for the patients, despite the existence of
an employment center in the social-care home, the main type of employment of
the patients in the departments is the television installed in the living room.
In some departments, the television was not functional for a long-period of
who do not have a personal mobile phone are not able to call relatives or
establish confidential contact with the relevant authorities in the absence of payphones;
was no stationary for the patients for writing letters, applications, and complaints
(paper, pencil, pen, etc.).
is no public transport available to the social-care home, where about 450 patients
is a need for training of medical and non-medical staff of the social-care
working conditions of the employees of the psychiatric institution are in an
inadmissible condition, etc.
to the previous visit, positive changes were registered in the social-care home
based on the suggestions of the Human Rights Defender:
beds in the social-care home have been replaced with new ones;
quality has relatively improved,
smear screening tests were performed on female patients in social-care home to
detect cervical cancer.
vaccinations against the new coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic at the social-care
home are welcomed.
protection of human rights is a comprehensive process, which involves
guaranteeing the rights of all participants in the process, ensuring their
dignified treatment, and establishing relations that guarantee mutual respect.
One of the components of this principled approach is the status of the employees
and their rights of the bodies, whose function is the protection of the rights
working conditions and social guarantees for employees of psychiatric institutions,
including salaries, must be continuously improved.
Human Rights Defender sent the document reflecting the results of the visit
together with the proposals aimed at solving the registered problems to the
Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs of Armenia, expressing readiness to
discuss the issues raised and to support their solution.
publication is made with photos, taking into consideration that the systemic
problems remain unresolved for years, as a result of a carless and incorrect