Mediation Service for Human Rights in Healthcare

1 Jun, 2012

On April 27, 2012 the Coalition ‘Human Rights in Healthcare’ organized discussion “Medical mediation service and its development prospects in Georgia”.  The meeting has been hosted by the Open Society Georgia Foundation.

The support for the project has been provided by the Open Society Georgia Foundation and OSF -PHP.

Attendees to the meeting were representatives from MoH, NGO’s, judges and other experts.

The Coalition ‘Human Rights in Healthcare’, which is made up of 8 non-governmental organizations, has been implementing a project, ‘Human Rights’ Protection in Healthcare through the Development of Mediation Service’ since 2011.

Protection of human rights in health care remains to be an acute problem in Georgia.  For the past several years health care legislation has been brought in line with international standards of human rights, however, real life examples show that patients’ complaints against the medical service providers in medical clinics and institutions are on the rise.  There are a number of reasons for that: quality of medical care, patient’s lack of knowledge and information, unawareness of patients and medical staff about their rights and responsibilities, legislative drawbacks.  Marginal groups, who have limited knowledge and resources for the protection of their rights, are especially vulnerable.

The mediation service, an alternative form of dispute resolution and an efficient tool of avoiding conflicts and making new decisions, is gaining a foothold in the health care sphere.  Moreover, the mediator will help avoid costly and protracted court proceedings, which are rather stressful for the involved parties.  The introduction of the mediation service in the insurance sphere has plaid quite a positive role in Georgia.  This has led to the foundation of Legal Entity of Public Law Medical Mediation Service and granting broader functions to the mediation service.  Furthermore, mediation is applied in various spheres, including the court system.  For example, notary mediation has been introduced; mediation has been successfully practiced in the juvenile justice system either.

The project ‘Human Rights’ Protection in Health Care through the Development of Mediation Service’ has been implemented in Georgia since 2011.  The project has been supported by the Open Society Institute.  The project aims to develop the mediation service in healthcare as an efficient tool for the regulation of relationships between patients and doctors and complaints made on medical services. The project has been implemented by the Coalition “Human Rights in Health Care”.

The Coalition ‘Human Rights in Health Care’ has 8 non-governmental organizations among its members: Georgian Association for Psychosocial Aid ‘Ndoba’, Association ‘Right to Health’, Union ‘Cooperation for Equal Rights’, Foundation ‘Global Initiative on Psychiatry’, Union ‘New Vector’, Georgian Health Law and Bioethics Society, Georgian Alliance for Patient Safety, Georgian Center for Medical and Psychosocial Rehabilitation of Torture Victims.