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Ukrainian opposition politician bashes Kiev for tearing down country’s healthcare

February 02, 20:07 UTC+3 KIEV

A Ukrainian opposition politician says Kiev’s current healthcare policy has revived and enabled the spread of diseases that the civilized world had eliminated a long time ago

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© REUTERS/Valentyn Ogirenko

KIEV, February 2. /TASS/. Kiev’s current healthcare policy has revived and enabled the spread of diseases that the civilized world had eliminated a long time ago, Viktor Medvedchuk, the leader of the Ukrainian Choice opposition public movement stated.

"After four years of Euro-style reforms, Ukraine has had to tackle diseases the civilized world had wiped out a long time ago," he said in an article published at the official homepage of the Ukrainian Choice movement. "These reformers’ crusades have sent our country reeling decades back into the past."

On that score, Medvedchuk cited an epidemic of measles currently spreading in Ukraine. He referred to the Public Health Ministry’s data, which indicates that 2,933 have come down with measles since the beginning of the year. As many as 1,966 people have been hospitalized

A total of 996 patients diagnosed with measles are children.

"This statistics is more than just alarming and it proves that there is an epidemic of the disease here, this is undoubtedly an epidemic," the politician said.

He quoted the chairperson of the national committee for the verification and elimination of measles, Irina Kolesnikova, as the source of this data.

"On the face of it, Public Health Minister Ulyana Suprun prefers to speak about ‘an outbreak’," Medvedchuk said.

Diphtheritis is another disease that runs the risk of turning into an epidemic in Ukraine because of highly insufficient vaccination and ‘disastrously small reserves of the vaccine’.

"The Public Health Ministry has only 900 doses of the vaccine today - the ones that it received by way of humanitarian aid," Medvedchuk said. "This only means there’s nothing to cure diphtheritis with."

He recalled Ukraine’s pitiable experience with an outbreak of the contagious disease in the past.

"After the World Health Organization officially announced an outbreak of the disease in Ukraine in 1991, a significant reduction in the number of cases occurred only in 1998," Medvedchuk said. "Over that time, the disease affected more than 19,000 people and 696 of them died."

"That’s why there’s hardly any reason to hope that all things should pass," he said.

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