The recent war not only devastated much of what fragile healthcare system had previously existed in Artsakh, but it also caused an exodus of medical staff from the region. In fact, according to a study by Artsakh’s Ministry of Health, at least 70 medical specialists are currently needed. Twenty of these posts are categorized as extremely urgent.
To address this problem, FAR, with the support of the Armenian American Health Professionals Organization (AAHPO), just recently launched the new Doctors for Artsakh project.
In coordination with Artsakh's Ministry of Health and the NGO Progressive Medicine, Doctors for Artsakh aims at filling these gaps with leading doctors from Armenia’s medical centers on a rotating basis. The project also includes trainings for Artsakh-based healthcare workers using both offline and virtual communication tools, and occasional in-person sessions. Some critically needed medical equipment and supplies will be also provided throughout the project.
The first group to be working with the program left for the Martuni Region in early April, where they will each stay for a duration of at least two weeks to up to six months.
"Since 2011, through the initiative of Dr. Raffy Hovanessian, FAR and AAHPO started implementing the Continuing Medical Education Program inArtsakh. A post-war visit with a group of healthcare providers was another opportunity to clarify the needs of the healthcare system, particularly in terms of professional resources, and to outline opportunities for which we can address them through our partner organizations," said FAR Health Programs Director Dr. Hambardzum Simonyan.
In addition to AAHPO this lifesaving program is generously sponsored by The Nazarian Family Foundation, FAR's Dr. Raffy Hovanessian Education Fund, and the Armenian Medical Fund.