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Minister of Health of Ukraine Lyashko and CEB staff discuss financial support to restore health infrastructure in Ukraine

31 August 2023

The Minister of Health of Ukraine, Viktor Lyashko, and Deputy Minister and Chief State Sanitary Doctor, Igor Kuzin, met with staff from the Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) to advance the interaction and strengthening of cooperation in the healthcare sector aimed at restoring the medical infrastructure damaged in the war and further developing the healthcare system.

"The assistance we receive from international partners is extremely important for supporting Ukraine's healthcare system resilience. The workload has increased multiple times, doctors are working in very challenging conditions, yet they continue to save people's lives every day. I thank the Council of Europe Development Bank for paying attention to the challenges our healthcare system has faced due to the war. Our goal is to ensure quality, accessible, and free medical care for patients despite everything. Together, we can move more effectively in this direction. The funds, once the loan is approved, will be directed towards the development of services in the current priority areas – mental health and rehabilitation" said Ukraine's Minister of Health, Viktor Lyashko.

“Ukraine’s accession to the CEB only took place in mid-June, but the first project is already on its way for approval. Strengthening the health sector is of vital importance for the well-being of the Ukrainian population and we are confident that by partnering with the World Bank we can maximise impact to the advantage of the most vulnerable” – commented Jasmina Glisovic, Head of the Grant Operations and New Instruments Division.

The key areas of cooperation will focus on meeting Ukraine's urgent healthcare needs and could amount to €100 million. The funds will be directed towards implementing existing projects and launching new ones in four directions. 

The primary focus is the restoration and modernization of hospital care in line with the Government’s reforms, which include renovating hospitals with energy efficiency considerations and ensuring access to alternative sources of energy; developing a network planning for hospitals, technical specifications and project documentation. Also, support will be provided in terms of digitization and innovation. This includes the implementation of a digital tool for tracking patient referrals from local to national level in an unified system and the development of core modules for the e-Health electronic healthcare system.

"Implementing these healthcare projects together with the Council of Europe Development Bank is a significant step towards Ukraine’s reconstruction and recovery. Both sides have made significant efforts to achieve this goal. Since December, the Ministry of Health has been working on the project 'Strengthening the Healthcare System and Saving Lives' (HEAL Ukraine) in collaboration with the World Bank, which addresses the restoration and reconstruction of medical infrastructure, digitization, and the development of rehabilitation and mental health areas. Additional funding within the framework of international cooperation allows expanding existing projects and launching new ones," said Deputy Minister, Chief State Sanitary Doctor Igor Kuzin.

Part of the funds will be directed towards meeting the new and urgent needs in the field of mental health and rehabilitation: equipment procurement, restoration, and creation of medical infrastructure to enhance the accessibility of these services. 

Efforts will also be made towards restoring the primary care network: both expanding the network and modernizing the infrastructure of the buildings, as well as ensuring the continuous operation of mobile teams providing medical services in affected and remote areas.

“CEB team is working hard with colleagues from the Ministry of Health and the World Bank to complete the appraisal process and move forward with the project as soon as possible” Diana Bertje, Ukraine Country Manager of the Council of Europe Development Bank. 

On 15 June 2023, Ukraine completed the accession process and became the 43rd member state of the Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB). The Bank’s cooperation with Ukraine is one of the goals of the CEB’s Strategic Framework for 2023-2027.