The 70-year-old civic activist is now back
at home after a Health Ministry commission on July 26 organized her discharge.
Her release from forced confinement in a Zaporizhia psychiatric hospital should
be welcomed but this is not a happy ending just yet. Her daughter is facing two
administrative charges for “obstructing” police officials for behaving as most
of us would if close relatives were being dragged away against their will for
unnecessary psychiatric “treatment.” It seems clear the authorities were forced
to respond after immense public and international pressure, but have no
intention of learning any lessons from the occasion. Quite the contrary: the
commission, it is reported, “established,
firstly that treatment was timely; secondly that the treatment of the patient
was adequate. All of this made it possible to considerably improve her state of
health. Therefore the possibility is being considered of changing the form of
treatment from hospital-based to outpatient.”
In other words, the psychiatrists are
vindicated, as is the court which saw no problem with ordering the activist’s
forced confinement and “treatment.” And that’s despite a diagnosis that was at
least as questionable as the commission’s report.
Nonetheless, Raisa Radchenko is now free
thanks to considerable domestic and international pressure.