The grants, made possible by donations from people in 79 countries, will fund prescription drugs, equipment costs, transportation and equipment for first responders, and other life-saving needs for organizations working on the ground. .
By Talya Meyers
Since the invasion of Ukraine, Direct Relief has awarded more than $12 million to nine organizations working on the ground to address the health impacts of war in Ukraine, whether in Ukraine itself or in neighboring host countries. refugees.
The grant funding is in addition to more than 508,000 pounds (230,425 kg) of direct medical assistance provided by Direct Relief since February 24, 2022, when Russia first invaded Ukraine, to groups helping refugees, internally displaced persons and others affected by the ongoing crisis. .
The war in Ukraine has created shortages of life-saving medicines including insulin, oncology drugs and thyroid medications, while increasing the need for medical aid like PPE, wound care, antibiotics and even a antidote to chemical weapons. Direct Relief provided all of these drugs and supplies to partners working in the area.
However, the situation has also created needs that cannot be met by medical aid shipments. Ukrainians who have fled the country find themselves without any means to pay for the prescription drugs they urgently need. A Kyiv hospital offering free care to people injured or affected by war is unable to pay the salaries of its medical staff. A coalition of first responders, invited by the Ukrainian government to carry out search and rescue operations in the country, needs transport and equipment.
Grants provided by Direct Relief will help cover these costs, and more.
Beneficiaries of grants provided or committed are:
Direct cash assistance to Ukrainian refugees ($10 million provided): Ukrainian refugees in Poland will receive medical care, but face high co-payments for prescription drugs that many, fleeing without income or resources, will not be able to afford. With a focus on mothers and their children, as well as the elderly, this grant will be used to pay prescription copayments for Ukrainian refugees at pharmacies across Poland. The program is a joint initiative between Direct Relief and Pelion, Poland’s largest healthcare company.
Charity Fund Modern Village and Town ($250,000 provided): This Ukrainian NGO established a distribution center in central Ukraine, where it provided medicines, medical supplies and hygiene items to people fleeing violence. Two grants of $100,000 were used to help defray operating costs, such as trucking and generators. In addition, the organization was tasked with carrying out emergency patient transfers out of conflict zones in eastern Ukraine, for patients with cancer, cystic fibrosis, pericarditis and others. conditions requiring urgent medical attention. An additional $50,000 has been granted to help the Charity Fund continue these services in the coming months.
Ukrainian Diabetes Federation ($150,000 provided): The war in Ukraine has created severe logistical obstacles for people with diabetes, making it difficult to access insulin, blood sugar monitoring equipment and even food. This organization in the country distributes medical supplies and is currently monitoring where people who need insulin are and where they are fleeing. This grant will be used for operating costs so they can distribute material assistance, also provided by Direct Relief, and continue to collect and share vital information.
Polish National Agency for Strategic Reserves ($350,000 committed): The Polish government has appointed this organization to act as a hub for humanitarian aid, including medical and other necessary materials. In this role, they worked with Direct Relief to store medical aid safely. They will use the funding to continue their humanitarian operations.
Project Joint Guardian ($50,000 provided): This organization is a coalition of US and international firefighters who support first responders and search and rescue efforts around the world. At the invitation of the National Emergency Service of Ukraine, the group will send 20 representatives to carry out search and rescue and first responder operations, as well as to train Ukrainian responders in certain rescue techniques. (Direct Relief is providing logistics services to send search and rescue equipment to Ukraine, and the 20 representatives will also use Direct Relief emergency medical backpacks.) Funding will be used to cover transportation costs and purchase the necessary equipment.
Society for Critical Care Medicine ($750,000 provided): This organization is a global community of clinicians caring for critically ill or injured patients in more than 100 countries. Members in Ukraine and neighboring countries have identified critical medical aid needed by people affected by the ongoing war. The funding will be used to purchase the drugs and supplies most needed by intensivists in these countries, using well-established supply chains.
Polish Diabetes Federation ($102,000 pledged): This organization is a senior member of the International Diabetes Federation. They have identified 500 Ukrainian refugees in Poland who have diabetes and need help and will use the funding to purchase pharmacy and food vouchers for these patients.
Dobrobut Hospital ($750,000 provided): Before the Russian invasion of Ukraine, it was a network of private hospitals in kyiv with a large fleet of ambulances. Once the war started, they began to act as a non-profit hospital, providing care on a pay-as-you-go basis and dispatching ambulances to the community to find attack victims and bring them to hospital. ‘hospital. The grant will allow them to provide free care to all patients, pay salaries and provide food for medical staff over the next few months.