Today, many discussions are held because of some individual elements of the new medical reform in the society and expert environment, in particular, with the beginning of the all-Ukrainian campaign «Doctor for each family». Everyone is asked quite logical questions: what is it, how to choose it, how much will it cost, will there be enough resources to provide high-quality medical services in this format and many others.

First of all, it should be noted that the idea is good in principle, but how will it be realized in Ukraine? There will be problems with this, as always, any reforms should be carried out systematically and not somehow in a hurry.

Immediately, let’s ask the question: do we have a sufficient number of physicians, which are qualified enough to qualitatively provide a wide range of services that is assumed within the framework of the family medicine? Unfortunately, no. We do not have specialists even in a narrow profile in the right amount, and most Ukrainians probably already faced a problem when doctors make false diagnoses prescribe wrong and expensive treatment … and all these because of lack of their professionalism.

Why is that? Because corruption in medicine begins in educational institutions, where the entrants go for money, many people pass the session for money and diplomas also are bought, after all. On the way out, we have a lot of talentless, indifferent «doctors» who go to work not because of the vocation and not because of their talents, but whereas of hopelessness or the need to return investments invested in education. As people say: «As I think, what kind of lawyer am I, it’s terrible to go to the doctor.»

This is the situation with specialists in a narrow profile, and we are talking about a family doctor who must be able to provide first aid, conduct a quality medical examination at least once a year, put a correct diagnosis and so on and so forth. And all these he must be able to do for 2000 patients (actually, their clients), which are assumed in accordance with the reform.

The second problem is financing.  There are obvious mistakes in this field too. Previously, the state allocated funding for medical facilities for each citizen, respectively. Now it is assumed that this fixed amount of money (210 UAH per year) will be redistributed to the family doctor for each patient with whom the declaration will be signed. Well, the doctor will have a very good salary, in theory, if he gets a sufficient number of patients. But what will be with hospitals and polyclinics? Whereby all these buildings will be maintained, how will the salaries be paid to medical personnel, how will the equipment be purchased and repaired? On whom will this responsibility lie?

There are a lot of questions. And while the MOH does not give clear and distinct answers, it is still too early to say that the current reform is effective and is suitable for Ukraine in general. And this is only the beginning of it …

Alina Solovyova

Translator: Andrii Komar

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