- Title: Ukrainian activists demand healthcare reform
- Date: 6th June 2017
- Summary: KIEV, UKRAINE (JUNE 6, 2017) (REUTERS) PROTESTERS OUTSIDE UKRAINIAN PARLIAMENT BUILDING VARIOUS OF PROTESTERS SIMULATING DEAD BODIES LYING ON THE GROUND COVERED WITH WHITE CLOTH PROTESTERS HOLDING PLACARDS PLACARD READING (Ukrainian): 'DEPUTY! GIVE ME A CHANCE TO LIVE' PROTESTERS LYING ON THE GROUND (SOUNDBITE) (English) ACTING UKRAINIAN HEALTH MINISTER, ULANA SUPRUN, SAYING: "In the healthcare system there is a lack of understanding of how bad the system really is, because a lot of our lawmakers don't actually go to the hospitals here in Ukraine. They go out of the country, or they have their own hospital system separate from the rest of the people in Ukraine. And their hospital system, which Feofania hospital (for state officials) belongs to, is very different than the ones most people go to." PARLIAMENT (SOUNDBITE) (English) ACTING UKRAINIAN HEALTH MINISTER, ULANA SUPRUN, SAYING: "I think that there is a lack of information, a lack of telling the truth, where they still feel that there is this free medical care available in Ukraine which isn't true. Almost all patients pay for everything, from the moment they walk into the hospital, paying for all their medicines, for all the disposables, paying the doctors extra fees, and then when they leave the hospital, they leave broke. They have to sell their apartments; they have to sell their cars and they have to borrow money from their loved ones." PROTESTERS HOLDING PLACARDS AND OTHERS LYING ON THE GROUND UNDER CLOTH PROTESTER HOLDING PLACARD READING (Ukrainian): 'I WANT QUALITY HEALTHCARE' (SOUNDBITE) (Ukrainian) PROTESTER, ANASTASIA MAZURENKO, SAYING: "We are tired of going to the hospital without knowing to whom and how much we will pay, how much money they will ask for their services. We are tired of seeing doctors who studied for so many years, and in fact are doing good things, are working for peanuts. This is humiliating for both them and us!" VARIOUS OF DEMONSTRATION (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) HEAD OF NGO 'PEOPLE LIVING WITH AIDS AND HIV, DMYTRO SHEREMBEY, SAYING: "More than one billion hryvnias (over 38 million USD) was allocated to the healthcare system annually and this was a completely corrupt system. And of course, completely closed and not transparent. And everybody - ministers, lawmakers, bureaucrats were enriching themselves from it. The only reason parliament resists healthcare reform is because of corrupt motivations of those people who were making a profit out of it. There is simply no other reason." ACTIVISTS HOLDING POSTERS DOG WEARING SIGN READING (Ukrainian): "My owner has to be healthy, vote for healthcare reform!"
- Embargoed: 20th June 2017 13:45
- Keywords: rally Kiev parliament building demonstration healthcare reform protest Ukraine
- Location: KIEV, UKRAINE
- City: KIEV, UKRAINE
- Country: Ukraine
- Topics: Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA0016K52VCP
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Dozens of activists rallied outside Ukraine's parliament building in Kiev on Tuesday (June 6) demanding faster healthcare reform.
Ukraine's parliament is currently mulling a draft law to reform the country's Soviet era healthcare system that activists label obsolete.
The package of reforms would herald new rules for medical care across the country, including in rural areas, which advocates hope will introduce quality healthcare that meets international standards.
Demonstrators on Tuesday waved banners calling for parliament action and some lay on the ground covered in white cloth to represent the hundreds of people they say have died as a result of a failing system.
Acting minister of health Ulana Suprun says parliamentarians are ignorant of the chronic failure in the current system. She added if adopted the reforms would allow the country to switch to an insurance based healthcare system within one year and will increase wages in the medical sector and decrease patient expenses.
Dmytro Sheremey, who heads the non-governmental organisation 'People Living with AIDS and HIV' accused Ukrainian bureaucrats and lawmakers involved in medicine procurement and allocation of state funds for healthcare system of blocking reforms and pursuing their own financial interests.
Activists said Tuesday's protest was staged in 50 cities across the country.
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