Staunton, Nov. 11 – The Russian labor ministry has decreed that it will no longer compensate invalids for the costs of needed prosthetics and wheelchairs greater than the average costs for such things in their federal district, an arrangement that because of wide variability in prices means many invalids or their families will have to pay far more or go without.
The ministry’s order which took effect on October 27 (publication.pravo.gov.ru/document/0001202310160023) is already sparking protests by parents and organizations of invalids (spektr.press/katastroficheskie-razmery-vlasti-rf-urezali-kompensacii-invalidam-za-protezy-i-kolyaski/).
Invalids in Russia number almost 11 million and are increasing daily because of the consequences of the war in Ukraine. According to the last government figures released on the subject – in 2021 – 60 percent of them needed some prosthetic or other support device – but only 86 percent of these had been able to purchase these.
Now that government support is going to fall, especially in rural areas and small cities and towns far from Moscow, the number of invalids who will be without needed equipment is certain to skyrocket – a development that will mean more invalids will be confined to their homes or will be increasingly visible in public.