The first palliative care centers will open in Armenia and Artsakh (Nagorno Karabakh) in 2018, minister of health Levon Altunyan told reporters on Friday, December 15. "Palliative care is a humanitarian and important part in medicine, aimed at making the last part of the extended life of terminally ill patients as painless and comfortable as possible," Altunyan said during his recent visit to Artsakh. "On the one hand, the patients are given an opportunity to prolong their lives, and are provided with comprehensive support on the other. Palliative care includes both analgesia and mental and psychological support." The minister said that palliative care will be introduced in the prime health care in Armenia and will be provided on a paid basis as the state budget does not envisage such expenditures. "The first 10-15 centers will open in Armenia in 2018, and one more is set to launch in Artsakh," the minister added.