Yerevan - Post Report Question and Answers

Are there any particular health concerns? What is the quality of available medical care? What medical conditions typically require medical evacuation?

Medical care is poor. I cannot stress this enough. The hospitals are outdated. Some ambulance staff do not know CPR. Emergency services outside the city are mostly non-existent. Pollution is bad in the winter as people burn anything to stay warm. Car pollution is terrible with the old Ladas and buses spewing emissions. I would try to medevac for anything serious. Routine dental care is decent. - Jan 2022

Most everything requires medical evacuation. In my opinion, quality of local care is unbelievably substandard. - Aug 2021

The pollution is pretty bad here which causes some respiratory issues, particularly during the winter. If you can't see Mt. Ararat, you know the air quality isn't great. Anything serious would require medavac, even something like a colonoscopy. Medical testing is super cheap here with a mammogram costing about $50 and another ultrasound I had was $30. The question is can the local provider accurately read the tests? There is a US medical provider at post with a local doctor as well. - May 2021

We need to get med evac'ed for anything serious, but for basic medical and dental needs the care here is good enough. Most hospitals are old style Soviet. - Oct 2014

Medical care is decent for Americans. There's a private hospital in town where foreigners can go. Anything serious and you'll need to be medevaced. - Sep 2011

Diagnostic care is quite good, though the U.S. Embassy has its own medical unit. Major care, including childbirth, involves medical evacuation. Dental care is supposed to be quite good. - Oct 2009

Sunburn, scorpions, and stupid drivers. Yerevan is at altitude, so some suffer from altitude headaches within their first week of arrival. With temperatures commonly 15 degrees Fahrenheit in the winter and 105 degrees in summer, there were weather-related health and safety concerns. Armenia was traditionally a hotbed of science and medicine in Soviet times--most have left for sunnier employment opportunities since independence. You may have to go to different clinics to find the technology, but it is there. Ironically, the issue now is the quality of specialists. In one case I know of, there was an MRI taken in Yerevan but no one of local standing to give a good read of the film. There is apparently only one endoscope machine in the country. The generally substandard medical care available on the local market is one significant contributor to why Yerevan is a 25 percent hardship Post and why the State Department deemed it necessary to begin stationing a FS Heath Practitioner at Post beginning in 2005.Medevacs to London are common, though the Embassy sends folks to good, often English speaking, specialists or handles most things in house. A local heart surgeon, internist and registered nurse augment the FSHP in the med unit. Armenian medical experts rarely go into great details about ones condition or treatment--they have the MD and expect you to listen to their learned advice. Be prepared to ask lots of follow up questions if you are used to the freer give and take of information with U.S. medical professionals. Dental care is top notch with English speaking specialists using the latest Western technology. A cleaning costs US$55, a crown US$250. - Jul 2008

It would scare me to have any health care handled in this country. The few decent practitioners who were trained under the Soviet system are fewer and farther between. Intense corruption for the last 15 years means many university degrees have been paid for. Which ones? Don't wait until you're on the surgical table to find out. - Jan 2008


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