World Patient Safety Day in Ukraine

As we approach World Patient Safety Day, we’re putting patients in the spotlight by sharing Halyna’s story; a patient who was treated at one of UK-Med’s mobile clinics in Ukraine. World Patient Safety Day, observed annually, unites us in a global effort to raise awareness about patient safety and inspire united action to reduce patient harm.

Meet Halyna, a resilient woman in her sixties. Halyna has chosen to remain in her home village in eastern Ukraine despite living less than 15km away from the frontline, leading to her and her family facing medical, psychological, and financial challenges. Halyna’s story is one that many Ukrainians can relate to, as her decision to remain at home is deeply rooted in her personal life story and convictions.

She first heard about UK-Med’s mobile clinics from her family doctor, Dr Nelya. Halyna is very close to Dr Nelya, who’s been there for her over the years, both medically and emotionally. When Halyna recently received the results of her blood test, doctor insisted she visit the UK-Med mobile clinic.

Mobile Health Clinics Explained

A mobile clinic is a small, self-contained unit consisting of an outfitted van along with a handful of well-trained healthcare staff. These clinics can drive to any location and begin seeing patients in a moment’s notice.

Nearly 10,000 patients have accessed our mobile clinics in Ukraine.

Halyna is one of thousands of Ukrainians who have accessed our mobile clinics in Ukraine.

At the mobile clinic, which visited Halyna’s village only a few kilometres away from the frontline in the Zaporizhzhia region, Halyna received a full medical checkup, including an electrocardiogram. She was informed by UK-Med’s doctor, Dr Ilya, working with the mobile clinic that day, that she needed further care and potentially a referral to a specialist. While setting further appointments with Halyna, UK-Med’s mobile team gave her practical recommendations to guide her, including on her medication.

Halyna’s life isn’t without its share of challenges, but she faces them head-on. She wants to express her heartfelt thanks to the UK-Med team “for reaching our rather remote village, which has no water or roads”, where basic necessities remain a luxury in war time. For Halyna and others like her, humanitarian aid is a lifeline, and she’s grateful for the medical and psychological support.

What is World Patient Safety Day?

World Patient Safety Day, commemorated each year on the 17th of September, aims to raise global awareness about patient safety and calls for united action by key actors to reduce patient harm. Patient safety focuses on preventing and reducing risks, errors and harm that happen to patients during the provision of health care.

Key to reducing patient harm is their active engagement in the treatment process. During UK-Med’s interventions in humanitarian emergencies, patients and their well-being are at the centre of our approach. This World Patient Safety Day, we stand together in solidarity, knowing that every step we take toward patient safety is a step toward a healthier, brighter future.

Our work in Ukraine

Millions of people have fled their homes and travelled long distances without food, water, or access to healthcare. We’re on the ground providing direct medical care, training and support for the people of Ukraine right now.

Ukraine has been our biggest emergency response to date, with 90 doctors, nurses, surgeons, and paramedics sent to provide life-saving medical aid. We first arrived at the conflict on 1 March and have been providing care on the ground ever since. As the situation has evolved, so has our work.

We are delivering a wide range of medical aid across the country, including mobile health clinics, training for first responders, surgical support, and medical supplies and equipment including first aid kits, surgical equipment, Emergency Health Kits

Authors: Anastasiia Cherneha, Ukraine Communication and Media Officer, and Yulia Zinkevych, Ukraine Liaison Manager