Since the Ukraine conflict began in 2013, access to basic healthcare has been majorly disrupted. The eastern region of Ukraine was split by the fighting with parts coming under separatist control. As a result, getting healthcare became difficult for many – medical staff had fled, travelling to clinics became harder, and high numbers of internally displaced people put further pressure on already stretched health facilities. In 2014 the Ukrainian government exacerbated the situation by de-registering all health facilities in non-government controlled areas. In 2015, humanitarian groups estimated that 3.1 million people in the eastern provinces were in need of humanitarian assistance.
Doctors of the World UK started working in the Luhansk region of eastern Ukraine in August 2015. We not only offer healthcare for those affected by the conflict but also provide free medication, access to primary healthcare, mental health services (see below video), and support for victims of gender-based violence. We have three mobile units in Luhansk that support local health facilities, and currently provide around 40-50 medical consultations a day to patients who would otherwise not have access to primary healthcare. We also make referrals to secondary and tertiary healthcare facilities, as well as helping to cover any transportation costs and medical fees.
Between April and June 2017 we provided 6,421 consultations in Ukraine including:
- 5,124 primary medical consultations
- 623 sexual and reproductive health consultations
- 674 consultations for mental health and psychosocial support