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Brosse Street Journal » Education:

Medical Cabinets in Public schools

By Anna Chichinadze
Brosse Street Journal
Wednesday, May 30 2007
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To have medical officers in public schools is not a state requirement in Georgia. It depends on the own decision of the concrete school director will he have medical office in his school or not.
Every public school in Georgia gets money from the State budget at rate of 235 lari per pupil per month. From this money, a director gives salaries and covers other expenses, which could include a medical office.
The situation in Tbilisi's schools varies a lot. There is no an official list or document of the exact number of how many schools have medical cares at all. In some schools there are medical offices with a doctor and medicine, others don't have a doctor, or office, and for example in 51st public school the medical office exists only with charity.
Here is an answer of the director of school
# 49 Nino Abramishvili on the question if the school has a medical office: "We don't have any doctor and accordingly not an office in the school." It seems this school has not had a doctor since 1990, because of lack of money.
"Nobody from officials has told that it's a demand to have a doctor, nobody checks it, nobody cares, and why should I? Our budget is hardly enough for our salaries. It's not a pleasant thing what I'll say, but, let parents take care on their children," said the director of school # 49.
The Medical Cabinets appeared to be under the respond of the City Hall, neither of Ministries Health Care or Education. The Head of the Tbilisi City Hall department of social care and culture of Mamuka Katsarava said: "Yes, we are responsible on schools, and of course the medical offices are very important, but somehow we cannot demand to have them, the item is not decided yet, I should talk to the Ministry of Education, we should decide it at last, Thank you for reminding me this problem."
Not to have medical office is absolutely director's right given from the City Hall, but still, there are some schools in Tbilisi, in bad or good conditions, but have medical support for pupils. For example, there is medical office in school # 170. "The only doctor, cotton pads and iodine are the only support, but they exist, it's better than nothing at all," says the director Nino Tabatadze.
And at last the third way, to have medical support in schools - charity.
The charity is the support what makes the medical office of Tbilisi's 51 public school provided with medicines. With the personal contact and friendship of the director of the school David Lagvilava could find the pharmaceutical company GPC that provides the cabinet with medicines. The school pays just for the doctor and nurse's salaries. But even in such a good conditions as they say, they can give just the first aid, not a complex annual check and research of pupils on different viruses, flues, and psychological situation, as it happens in developed countries. As the reason of it they talk about the great number of pupils.
Nona Miqiashvli, mother of two pupils say: "I need to feel safe when my children are in school, and spend there half of a day. They run and play and in case of any damage someone should take care on them. Besides, they have contact with lots of other children and the risk of viruses and infections are high, at these conditions I don't feel safe. Situation needs to be changed


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