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Compiled by Messenger Staff
Friday, April 12
Doctor's license suspended due to Gogita Abashidze’s death

Netgazeti reports that Minister of Labour, Health and Social Affairs Davit Sergeenko said he and the Ministry take the full responsibility over the death of 10-year-old Gogita Abashidze. He said this particular case has highlighted the drawbacks in the healthcare system and not the mistakes of particular people. He said things need to be changed, but the Ministry will not avoid responsibility for the tragic incident.

Sergeenko said he is trying to avoid criticizing his predecessors, but also added that it was the Ministry’s responsibility to monitor such cases. “We will start monitoring many more cases." he said.

The Minister said the doctor of a district was suspended of his medical certification for four months because of Abashidze’s death.

Minister Sergeenko released the official cause of Gogita Abashidze’s death. He said the child died from imbalanced nutrition, not starvation.

Information about the serious condition of the child became public on March 21st; two days later the boy died. The five-member Abashidze family lives in extreme poverty but they are not in the list of socially vulnerable.

Margvelashvili says the Ministry will honor textbook contracts signed with book publishers

According to Netgazeti, the Minister of Education and Science Giorgi Margvelashvili said the Ministry has fully reviewed the school textbook contracts signed by the previous government. Margvelashvili said he was surprised to learn how little money the authors of the books received from their publishers. Margvelashvili said this will change and the authors will have more "worthy compensation."

Negotiations with book publishers will continue for the next five months and added that one million GEL will be allocated from the Ministry in this matter. Margvelashvili said although publishing houses have a one-year contract with the textbook authors, the rights of the latter have not been protected.

According to the Minister, the Macmillan publishing house will continue providing English textbooks in future.

The Books Publishers and Distributors Association (BPDA) as well as the authors of the textbooks have welcomed the Ministry’s decision to provide public schools with books free of charge. However, BPDA members say the Ministry should not intervene in the publishing house's affairs and deprive them off of intellectual property rights as defined by the Georgian Constitution.

Publishers plan to go to court if the Ministry will not make any concessions.

According to the Ministry of Education, 12 million GEL will be used for providing 650,000 schoolchildren with school textbooks. The Ministry plans to print these books in printing houses without the involvement of book publishers.