Ministry of Health reports on accomplished procurement made last year and presents the plans for upcoming procurement of medicines. The ministry’s team prepared amendments to regulations on medical treatment abroad and stipulates the need for a transplantation law.
Kyiv, September 29, 2016. Eighty per cent of medicines purchased through international organizations have been delivered to Ukraine and the rest will be delivered within the next two months. This was stated by Ulana Suprun, Acting Minister of Health of Ukraine, while reporting about two-month activities of the Ministry of Health at a press briefing held at Ukraine Crisis Media Center. “We have completed the work for 2015 in the sense that all deliveries are to be [in Ukraine] by the end of November. Eighty per cent of medicines and medical devices, which were ordered for 2015, are already in Ukraine and most of them are already in the regions,” stated Ulana Suprun. Medications that we are still waiting for are some vaccines from UNICEF, Crown Agents and UNDP.
Ulana Suprun also reported that this week the Ministry will hold talks with four international organizations which it is going to cooperate with on 2016 procurement. “This is UNICEF Ukraine, UNDP, Crown Agents and one new – Partnership for Supply Chain Management,” detailed the Acting Minister of Health. She noted that 2017 requests are planned to be made in January.
Commenting on the situation with delays in delivery of medicines for cancer, the Acting Minister stressed that it was the Ukrainian distributor’s fault and Crown Agents decided to change the procedure for future cooperation with distributors to avoid recurrence of such cases. Ulana Suprun added that medicines from that scandalous lot, whose shelf life was less than eighteen months, would be replaced with new medicines if required. “Crown Agents responded very quickly and gave a guarantee letter that if we do not use those drugs [until the expiration date], they will replace them with new,” she said.
Ulana Suprun informed that the next year the state budget expenditure on health care would increase by six per cent compared to 2016. “We have also received additional two billion hryvnias to purchase medicines through public procurement, and also received a financing increase for some programs – treatment abroad and others,” she noted. In particular, they managed to agree with the budget committee of the Verkhovna Rada on financing for treatment abroad for another 30 patients, 13 of them – children.
Oleksandr Linchevskyi, Deputy Minister of Health of Ukraine, said that the Ministry had prepared amendments to the regulations on medical treatment abroad. “Currently the procedure for entering the waiting list is long, complex and contains corruption risks. […] We have introduced changes to the resolution so that the patient could begin treatment much sooner. We mean daily meetings of the Commission and a different selection mechanism – now a patient is not dependent on meeting with part-time specialists of the Ministry, they can be sent directly from their region,” said Mr. Linchevskyi. He added that the Ministry of Health, in coordination with other ministries, is planning to make letters of guarantee with hospitals so that a patient could be sent in advance without waiting for the full money transfer.
Ulana Suprun also reminded that the Ministry had canceled Decree no.33, which determined the number of health workers per establishment – the number of hospital staff depended on the number of beds. “Our hospitals, clinics and other institutions should be maintained the way they see it, not the way Kyiv tells them. Doctors at the local level understand their needs better,” she said.
Ms. Suprun also said that today the Ministry held a donor conference with the participation of 50 donors from different organizations and embassies around the world. “We presented our plans to reform health care so that they can help us,” she noted. She reminded that last week draft amendments had been presented at a meeting with representatives of the Cabinet of Ministers, the Parliamentary Committee on Health, representatives of regional councils and mayors.
Oleksandr Linchevskyi noted that the Ministry of Health is looking forward to a law on transplantation. “Ukraine has technical capacities, we have qualified surgeons and equipment, they can perform the most common transplantations at a high level, and not only in Kyiv. But we need the law,” he stated. Mr. Linchevskyi added that it is strategically more advantageous to invest in the development of transplantation in Ukraine than spend the money to send patients abroad. A similar situation is observed with hemodialysis.