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Europe's second largest country, Ukraine has a population of over 44 million people. Médecins Sans Frontières first began working in Ukraine in 1999 and is currently responding to the ongoing "frozen war” in the east of the country.  

As the conflict in eastern Ukraine continues, access to healthcare remains severely limited for people living along the frontline, due to disrupted services and damage to infrastructure.  

In eastern Ukraine, MSF has scaled up its mobile clinics. The teams offer primary healthcare and psychological support to those living in or near the conflict zone, including internally displaced people. The majority of patients are aged over 50 and have chronic diseases.  

Without transportation and isolated by poor weather, villagers in the east, mostly elderly people, have no choice but to live with the constant stress of the conflict in the region. Nearby shelling creates acute anxiety and depression, in addition to cutting off access to regular care for conditions such as cardiovascular disease, hypertension, and diabetes. 

We continue to run mobile clinics along the frontline and have increased psychological and medical support to people living in the areas controlled by the Ukrainian government, including those who had been displaced. In addition, MSF has provided training in psychological support to assist healthcare workers and teachers living and working in the conflict zone.  


Treating Tuberculosis and Hepatitis C 

MSF runs a hepatitis C program in Mykolaiv region, providing treatment with two effective direct-acting antivirals – daclatasvir and sofosbuvir – as well as diagnostic tests, patient support, education and counselling services. Some patients are co-infected with HIV or on opioid substitution therapy; others are healthcare workers infected with the virus. 

Olena Melnikova, 42-years-old, taking a viral load test in the process of hepatitis C treatment. She is one of the patients who underwent the hepatitis C treatment provided by MSF in Mykolaiv, Ukraine. © Aleksandr Glyadyelov / MSF

At the end of 2017, MSF handed over care of patients with drug-resistant tuberculosis (DR-TB) in the penitentiary system in Dnipro and Donetsk. In order to ensure continuity of care, a transfer plan was put in place for each patient, including the provision of medication to enable them to finish their treatment. MSF is also now working to open a new program in Zhytomyr to treat DR-TB patients in the general population. 

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