Bulgaria Bids Farewell to Brave Patient Rights ActivistHealth | January 9, 2012, Monday // 15:27| views
Teodora Zaharieva passed away from cancer on January 7 after more than 10 years of fighting her illness, as well as the apathy of the institutions. Photo by BGNES
Approximately 300 people gathered to pay their last respects to Teodora Zaharieva, the country's most fervent cancer patient rights activist.
Bulgaria's former EU Commissioner Meglena Kuneva, Sofia Mayor Yordanka Fandakova, Health Minister Stefan Konstantionov, former Health Minister Ilko Semerdzhiev and Bulgaria's Ombudsman Konstantin Penchev were among those who attended the event.
As the coffin was brought out of the capital's Sveta Sofia church by Zaharieva's relatives, it was applauded by the people who had gathered around.
Teodora Zaharieva passed away from cancer on January 7 after more than 10 years of fighting her illness, as well as the apathy of the institutions.
In 2007, after a trial that protracted over 3 years, Zaharieva managed to win a claim of BGN 100,000 against the Ministry of Health for having failed to provide her with the needed treatment. She used the funds from the case to invest in a patient organization to protect not only those suffering from cancer, but all ill people in the country.
In 2009, the activist was bestowed by the Bulgarian Helsinki Committee with the title Human of the Year. In 2010, she was given the Civil Courage Award of the Panitza Foundation.
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