A furloughed journalist with state broadcaster CyBC, who in 2007 was diagnosed with encephalitis, is suing the state for damages between €500,000 and €2m for human rights violations after the authorities refused to compensate her for €186,000 she had paid out of her own pocket for treatment.
Evdokia Loizou, 44, has been suffering with health problems since 2007 and in 2012 the labour inspection department acknowledged that her disease was caused by the environment at CyBC.
The department ruled that biological and chemical contamination had been detected “due to the uncontrolled presence of animals (cats) in the workplace attributed to the poor condition of the premises” as well as a large accumulation of bacteria and poor ventilation.
Loizou reported Cyprus to the European Commission for violating community rules on healthcare. Despite being vindicated, the authorities refuse to pay the €186,000 she paid over and above the insurance coverage.
The journalist was forced to stop working at CyBC in May 2010. The broadcaster’s board decided to stop paying her salary in April 2014.
In a December 21, 2017 medical report, neurologist at the UK’s National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery Michael Hanna said Loizou had been evaluated on many occasions and was found to experience significant neurological fatigue, intermittent oxygen desaturations (reduction in blood oxygen levels) and intermittent respiratory difficulties.
“Unfortunately, she is not able to work. Her health condition is not stable. She fatigues easily on minimal exertion which worsens her condition. She continues treatment by the specialist team in London until her health condition is stabilised,” Hanna said.