Public Defender’s Statement on Preventive Measures in the Context of Novel Coronavirus Pandemic

The Public Defender of Georgia is responding to the growing trend of confirmed cases in Georgia in the context of the novel coronavirus pandemic and calls on the relevant agencies to pay special attention to the protection of the right to health of persons placed in state care institutions, strengthen the risk prevention measures and closely monitor the implementation of the relevant recommendations.

The world trend shows that older persons, people with chronic diseases and persons with disabilities are particularly vulnerable to the novel coronavirus. Special attention should be paid to the situation of people in state care institutions and penitentiary facilities, as the risks of spread of the virus are high in these institutions.

The Public Defender of Georgia constantly monitores the situation in state care institutions through regular visits, including the virus prevention and protection procedures.

The monitoring shows that more efforts should be made to control the movement of persons, use of protective equipment and observation of rules in the above institutions. In addition, it is important to continuously inform and advise people living in similar institutions about the possible risks of the spread of the novel coronavirus and preventive measures in a form accessible to them.

It is especially disturbing that the cases of coronavirus have been confirmed in a nursing home for older persons in Batumi, which once again indicates the need to strengthen prevention, control and monitoring measures in these and other institutions.

The Public Defender hopes that the Government of Georgia, local self-governments and other service providers will make every effort to protect the right to life and health of the Georgian population and especially its vulnerable groups. At the same time, the Public Defender calls on the population to show caution as much as possible, implement recommendations and take care of their own and others' health.

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