The lifer was diagnosed with Hepatitis C, but he was not informed about it, nor treated

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Mikael Martirosyan is one of the exemplary convicts who does not waste a single minute in vain in prison. He is a convict of a semi-open regime. He studies at the Faculty of Psychology, works, and pays the tuition fee with the salary he received. He says he needs psychology for self-control and correct communication with others. But recently Mikael Martirosyan has lost his temper. He refused the surgery prescribed by law.

Martirosyan has breathing problems due to the crooked nasal septum. He can not breathe at night, he wakes up. In April 2020, he was transferred to Artmed Medical Center for surgery on the nasal septum. It turned out that the convict had Hepatitis C, a serious viral disease that affects the liver.

“Either you became infected sexually or through someone else’s needle,” the Artmed employee told the patient, alluding to the drugs. These words deeply offended Mikael, he refused the septum surgery.

ՙՙThere I was treated with contempt because I was a convict. I have not had sex since 2003 and have never used drugs. They insulted me.”I did not want them to operate on me,” said Mikayel.

Returning to Armavir penitentiary institution, he unexpectedly found out that the diagnosis of Hepatitis C has been mentioned in medical records since 2019.

“In fact, they discovered the disease in 2019, but they did not tell me at all. I do not know how or who infected me. At least they could have suggested to go on a diet or, I do not know, try some treatment. They did not say, they just did not say anything, I did not receive any explanation from either the Armavir doctor or the Penitentiary Medical Center. They never explain to us what or how. It is possible that I was infected at the dentist, or by the doctors themselves,” says Mikael Martirosyan.

His life seems like a long chain of insults and contempt.

This year, he wrote an application to Kamo Manukyan, director of the Penitentiary Medical Center, demanding that he be taken to a civilian hospital for surgery, but received no response. The lifer complains of severe headaches and rapid heartbeat. He says that he requested at least a head examination, but his demands are not met. The sick convict is left helpless.

 

The Penitentiary Medical Center, to which we applied, told Forrighst.am that they did not have any unanswered application from Mikael Martirosyan, that he was always under their care.

How could you diagnose hepatitis without informing the patient? Our question was answered that such a thing did not happen.

“For the first time on December 26, 2019, a rapid Hepatitis C test was performed. The disease was discovered, he was informed about the results. If you are sitting, your finger is pierced, blood is dripped on the plastic part of the test, and in two minutes the patient sees the line, then a note is made on the sheet in the presence of the convict. How can he not know that he has hepatitis?” said Naira Babayan, head of the public relations department of the Penitentiary Medical Center.

To the question how the Center can diagnose hepatitis, but does not carry out treatment for three years, she answered that they have many patients with Hepatitis C in Nubarashen and Convicts’ Hospital penitentiaries. “So far ,we have started their treatment; when we finish, we will move to Armavir penitentiary,” said Naira Babayan.

To the question whether the convict’s signature is on the information sheet, she answered. “No.”

She presented all the medical services the convict had received in several years, from the Covid vaccine to the nose-throat examination, and then informed that the convict had been referred for a nasal septum operation at Ardtmed. “It does not depend on us why he was not operated on,” said the Medical Center’s employee.

According to her, at the moment Martirosyan has an instruction for surgery, and they do not know why the management of Armavir penitentiary institution does not do it. And, they do not have an “unanswered” application by Martirosyan.

By the way, we found out that Mikayel Martirosyan received the answer to his application from the Penitentiary Medical Center only after Forrights.am asked them questions about it. Mikayel Martirosyan claimed that he only recently found out about the diagnosis of Hepatitis C made in 2019.

Syuzan Simonyan