Policy responses for Armenia - HSRM


Policy responses for Armenia

5. Governance

5.1 Governance

The GOVERNANCE of the health system with regard to COVID-19 relates to pandemic response plans and the steering of the health system to ensure its continued functioning. It includes emergency response mechanisms, as well as how information is being communicated, and the regulation of health service provision to patients affected by the virus.

With the State of Emergency declaration on 16 March, the Interagency office on the Prevention of CoronaVirus was upgraded and granted increased authority. It is now called the ‘Commandant Office’, with Deputy Prime Minister Avinyan leading efforts as the ‘Commandant’. The members of the Commandant Office are: Prime Minister’s chief of staff, Minister of Emergency Situations, Minister of Health, Minister of Economy, Minister of Finance, Minister of Territorial Administration, Head of the Police, National Security Service Director, Head of Department for the Coordination of Inspection Bodies in the Office of the Prime Minister, Head of Health and Labor Inspection Body, Head of Food Safety Body. Deputy Prime Minister Avinyan’s Office is fulfilling the duties of the Commandant Office Secretariat. The Commandant Office is in charge of all immediate needs and issues. It has been noted that the Government cannot keep extending the State of Emergency (most recently to 11 September) and they are working towards a legal solution for enforcing anti-epidemic measures.

Deputy Prime Minister Mher Grigoryan has been tasked with drafting an economic assistance package (see Section 6). His office is in charge of all mid- to long-term socio-economic issues related to the current situation. The overall responsibilities of donor coordination also remain under the auspices of Grigoryan, while immediate COVID-19 related donor engagement will be with the Commandant Office Secretariat. [https://www.gov.am/en/]

A national pandemic preparedness plan was in place before the outbreak, however it was not activated, because it was outdated and had not been revised since 2009. However, the national preparedness and response plan was developed using pillars of SPRP and for the each of 3 WHO scenarios. This plan was activated and is currently being implemented. The Ministry of Health is leading the national response to COVID-19. The NCDC and Ministry of Health are coordinating surveillance communications and international reporting.

There are there fast-track procedures for the regulation and licensing of medical devices, aids and treatments.