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We help premature babies in Ukraine. Project summary and next steps.

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In September last year, we provided extensive support to 10 neonatal hospitals in Ukraine. For twelve months, we carried out activities to strengthen health care in the field of neonatology and obstetrics. Today we are summing up the first year of cooperation with hospitals and opening the second edition of the project.

The program was aimed at improving the standard of care for mothers and children and training medical staff in European standards and the latest national guidelines for patient care, including in war conditions. In the first edition, it was implemented in hospitals in Kiev, Dnipro, Chernihiv, Kharkov, Chernivtsi, Zaporozhye, Poltava and Lviv. In implementing the project, we cooperated with the Association of Neonatologists of Ukraine, the Ukrainian non-governmental organization “Early Birds”, the National Health Service of Ukraine and the Ministry of Health of Ukraine. We equipped neonatal intensive care units with specialized medical equipment – neonatal resuscitation stations, patient monitors and two-syringe infusion pumps, and trained staff in how to use the devices. In each of the 10 hospitals, PMM conducted monthly stationary sessions for patients, increasing awareness of patient rights, newborn care and well-being, supplemented with regular online sessions. These sessions also discussed changes in the functioning of hospitals and medical services caused by the war in Ukraine, available medical packages within the National Health Service of Ukraine and possibilities of obtaining psychological support. The project also included a wide range of training for medical staff, including training on patient rights, communication with patients, four-day certified stationary medical training, among others. neonatal intensive care, post-resuscitation care and various perinatal problems of newborns and premature infants. Online training was conducted for medical staff from other hospitals in Ukraine, available on the popular Medvoice training platform.

In order to reach a larger group of recipients, also outside the 10 hospitals participating in the project, on the Ukrainian medical platform, the Polish Medical Mission published a comprehensive course on patient rights, doctor-patient communication and preventing burnout for medical workers, as well as a webinar on patient rights, taking care of well-being and newborn care for patients from all over Ukraine.

Main numbers:

  • By the end of August, 2,578 newborns had used medical equipment purchased under the project.
  • 1,717 patients took part in sessions conducted in 10 hospitals in the stationary and online format, as well as in a webinar for patients from all over Ukraine.
  • 995 doctors from all over Ukraine took part in a patient rights course registered with the Ministry of Health of Ukraine, conducted online on the Ukrainian medical platform, passed the test, received a certificate and points from the Ministry of Health of Ukraine.
  • 10 individual plans were developed to improve the functioning of hospitals and individual departments in war conditions.
  • During medical monitoring, 94.42% of medically trained medical workers showed improvement in patient care.
  • 346 doctors from 10 hospitals participating in the project took part in medical training, and 160 in training on patient rights.
  • There were 8 live online training sessions on patient rights, doctor-patient communication, and preventing burnout for medical workers from 10 hospitals. 160 medical workers took part.


I am extremely impressed by the endurance, determination and strength of the project team in Ukraine – medical trainers whose training was often interrupted by air alarms and moved to shelters, and patient rights educators who often conducted sessions for patients in hospital shelters, where, apart from while remaining calm, they also had to take care of the patients’ psychoemotional state. The project was implemented in difficult locations, such as Kharkov, Zaporizhia, Dnieper. In each of the 10 hospitals participating in the project, doctors were forced to deliver babies in the shelter last year, and some of them also performed surgical procedures there. Every day, doctors from these hospitals must carefully make extremely difficult decisions, including whether they can safely evacuate each patient to a shelter. – Milena Chodoła, project coordinator.

Our next activities

Over the next 12 months, we will continue the project in another 10 hospitals: in Vinnitsa, Lutsk, Ivano-Frankivsk, Khmelnytsky, Ternopil, Rivne, Uzhhorod and Kropyvnytskyi. They will benefit from a similar set of training courses for patients and medical staff, and they will be provided with equipment necessary to save the lives of newborns. Statistics collected during the first edition of the project show how much impact the improvement of the conditions in which they spend the first weeks of life has on the survival rate of newborns. For example, in one of the hospitals in Dnipro, mortality and treatment time in the neonatal intensive care unit decreased almost twice during the reporting period.



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