Deputy of the Odessa Regional Council from the OPPOSITION BLOC, Deputy Head of the Permanent Commission on Health and Social Policy, Iryna Kovalish, stated this on the air of Channel 7.
"Today, Ukraine has registered 1,800 measles cases. Leading by the number of infected are Ivano-Frankivsk, Odesa, and Ternopil regions. In these regions, in comparison with last year, the figures jumped 100 or more times. For example, if in the Odesa region for the whole of the past year only 6 cases of measles were detected, then on November 10, 2017, such cases are already 812! The reason for the epidemiological outbreak is the mechanism of public procurement of strategically important vaccines destroyed by the Ministry of Health in 2015 and 2016. Two years, there were no vaccines against measles at all because of the centralized purchases of medicines imposed by the Ministry of Health through international organizations in the regions of Ukraine. Medical facilities literally "scraped up" old stocks. As a result, there is the failure to implement the national calendar of vaccinations and, most terrible, the death of not vaccinated children," Iryna Kovalish said.
According to the deputy, in the current situation, the fault lies with the leadership of the Ministry of Health, but responsibility cannot be removed from the regional profile officials.
"The outbreak of measles in Ukraine is entirely on the conscience of the acting Minister of Health. However, I do not dismiss the responsibility for the situation from the regional officials who could insure themselves and, at the very least, carry out proper explanatory and preventive work. Moreover, for example, Odesa healthcare managers have a good example of how to respond to illiterate proposals by the Ministry of Health. For example, the Ministry imposed five hospital districts on Odessa. Odessa region resisted, and now it is a question of the approval of nine districts. This is an example of how Odesa and the Odesa region are able to resist unreasonable actions and unreasonable steps of Kyiv," Iryna Kovalish stressed.
The representative of the opposition is sure that, unfortunately, there should not be any changes for the better in 2018, because according to the draft laws adopted by the Verkhovna Rada on the so-called state financial guarantees in medicine, the vicious practice of centralized state purchases will continue, only now with the participation of the National Health Service.
In October 2017, another wave of measles was detected in the south of the Odesa region in the Bolhrad district. In total, as of November 10, 2017, there were 812 measles cases in the region, most of them children under the age of 18. In 2015 and 2016, there was no central supply of measles vaccine. In 2017, the first batch of vaccines purchased by the Ministry of Health came only in April. In summer, two lethal cases were recorded in Odesa: two children of 2 and 4 years old died of pneumonia caused by complication after measles.