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Ukraine’s health care system stressed 100 days into war

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Posted at 11:17 AM, Jun 03, 2022

It has been 100 days since Russia started its invasion of Ukraine and the World Health Organization said Ukraine’s health care system is strained.

Part of the reason is direct attacks on health providers. As of June 2, the WHO has recorded 269 attacks on health care services in Ukraine. Those attacks have left 76 dead and 59 wounded.

“In 100 days of war, there have been over 260 verified attacks on health care in Ukraine. These attacks are not justifiable, they are never ok, and they must be investigated. No health professional should have to deliver health care on a knife-edge, but this is just what nurses, doctors, ambulance drivers, the medical teams in Ukraine are doing,” said Dr. Hans Henri P. Kluge, WHO Regional Director for Europe.

While some facilities are damaged or destroyed, others are overwhelmed by people seeking treatment directly related to the war. The WHO said it has opened hubs in areas close to the conflict.

“WHO is committed to being in Ukraine both now and in the longer term – addressing immediate health challenges and supporting reconstruction of the health system. We are redeploying teams throughout the country as access and security improves,” said Dr. Jarno Habicht, WHO representative in Ukraine. “Health-mental and physical- must be at the center of Ukraine’s recovery and reconstruction plans”.

To date, the WHO has shipped 543 metric tonnes of medical supplies to Ukraine.