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UN expert to focus on the right to health in Tajikistan

DUSHANBE / GENEVA (22 May 2012) – United Nations Special Rapporteur Anand Grover will visit Tajikistan from 24 May to 1 June 2012 at the invitation of the Government to make an independent assessment of the realization of the right to health in the country.

“My objective is to engage the Government, development partners and the civil society in tackling the financial predicament of Tajikistan’s health system that relies heavily on private out-of-pocket payments, estimated to be more than two-thirds of total healthcare expenditure,” Mr. Grover said, announcing the first mission to the country by an independent expert charged by the UN Human Rights Council to monitor the implementation of the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health.

“I will also closely examine human rights facet of mental healthcare and TB treatment in the country,” said the UN Special Rapporteur, drawing attention to the “sorry plight of the affected people, who often face social stigma and discrimination, as if to add insult to injury.”

During his nine-day mission, Mr. Grover will discuss those challenges with all stakeholders to identify ways to curb the disease effectively, treat patients respectfully and encourage human rights extensively.

The UN Special Rapporteur will share his preliminary conclusions on the visit at a press conference on 31 May at 12:30, at the UNDP, 39 Aini Street, Dushanbe.

Mr. Grover will travel to Tajikistan, following his earlier fact-finding mission to Azerbaijan, from 16 to 23 May.

The Special Rapporteur is an independent expert appointed by the UN Human Rights Council to help States, and others, promote and protect the right to the highest attainable standard of health (right to health). Anand Grover (India) is co-founder and Director of the Lawyers Collective HIV/AIDS Unit and the Senior Counsel in India.

Learn more about the mandate and work of the Special Rapporteur: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Issues/Health/Pages/SRRightHealthIndex.aspx

OHCHR Country page – Tajikistan: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/countries/ENACARegion/Pages/TJIndex.aspx

For press inquiries and additional information, please contact Jamshid Gaziyev (+ 41 794444917 / srhealth@ohchr.org), or in Dushanbe, Zarangez Makhmudova (+992 985863680 / zarangez@.makhmudova@undp.org)

For media inquiries related to other UN independent experts:
Xabier Celaya, UN Human Rights – Media Unit (+ 41 22 917 9383 / xcelaya@ohchr.org)

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