Ukraine, Doctors Without Borders: “Mobile clinics to guarantee treatment for all, but difficult connections”

“During the year we work with Ukrainian colleagues who have now also escaped from the war, from their home, from their loved ones, from their roots. They have left family members who did not want to go with them for many reasons and have inevitably become our patients too. , and it is very impressive to have to see them pass ‘on the other side’ as patients. They tell us what they feel and what they see, and there is a strong dignity in them “. To tell the Adnkronos is Cristina Falconi, Italian head of mission of Doctors Without Borders in Ukraine who describes, in the story of the Italian doctors on mission, a daily world full of anecdotes and intense emotions.

“Yesterday I saw a couple of elderly people, he was a general practitioner before – the head of mission tells us – When we entered the room they almost welcomed us as if we had gone to visit a loved one. They thanked us. We asked if they had need something, they replied moved: we just need you to be there and listen to us “.

Doctors Without Borders, which has been present on Ukrainian territory for several years, was “already present in Donbass from 2014 to today – explains Falconi, which is located on the border between Ukraine and Hungary, in the Carpathians – Today as a result of this widening of the conflict , which then translated into a real war, we are working spasmodically, both around the country to support refugees but above all inside, where there are many people who have decided not to cross the border and are displaced “.

The critical issues “are above all the technical material and medicines – the head of MSF underlines at Adnkronos – The war destroys not only hospitals but supplies, especially for those suffering from chronic diseases, which are the main pathologies we are experiencing. Among the most serious, which need uninterrupted treatment, diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular diseases “. So far “a supply line has been set up, from Bordeaux to Brussels, and the material has been transported with great difficulty because the movements to the most affected areas, the east and the north of the nation, are very complicated”.

Doctors work by organizing “mobile clinics, to try to ensure continuity in the treatment of pathologies”. Among the most common, before the war there were “above all problems related to tuberculosis, HIV and hepatitis C” in the country. Now, as it is easy to predict, “mental health disorders have increased dramatically. We try to give technical suggestions on how to manage stress and anxiety, an anxiety that never ends because it also affects relatives and the future. , at the moment completely unknown “, concludes Falconi.

(by Ilaria Floris)

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