“We should treat better and save more than Russians do.” A frank conversation with a frontline surgeon

This text will offend everyone, and we really wouldn’t want that. ZN.ua’s (media outlet) decision to publish a major interview with an anonymous surgeon who saves lives near the front lines is not meant to insult officials or volunteers. It’s intended to contribute to the improvement of a system designed to save lives.

Anonymously, not because this skilled and deserving doctor fears responsibility, but because, being in military service, the interviewee must now coordinate all his statements. He understands that military censorship will silence his subjective cry about objective problems. It will eliminate criticism of the system, not military secrets. It’s about what cannot be kept silent. About the mistakes made by the state. About criminal actions and inaction that lead to the loss of lives where they could have been saved. And this is the most crucial aspect of medicine.

Similarly, we cannot remain silent about the mistakes of prominent combat medics, doctors, activists, and volunteers who have rightfully become darlings of the public. But now, their audience defends them from acknowledging and rectifying these mistakes, from seeking ways to improve. While each of us in all fields should strive to do our job better than Russians, as the price of it is thousands of saved lives. When it comes to thousands of human lives, there is no room for insults, vanity, or hype. A harmonious team is needed for victory.

This interview is with one doctor, but dozens like him will stand behind it.

Where are you right now, if you can say, or at least as much as you can say?

I’m in the southeast. I’m closer to the wounded than the military hospital, let’s put it that way.

How long have you been involved in the full-scale war?

In one capacity or another, I’ve been involved in the work of certain units since 2014. As an instructor, in civilian roles. During the full-scale war, I have been here since February 24, 2022.

I understand that it’s difficult to impress a surgeon who sees blood every day, unlike other people. Asking about what impressed you is probably bad manners. But still?

It’s not that it impressed me, but at some point, I noticed and said it out loud: I’ve never seen so many wounded in my life in any civilian hospital under any circumstances. When we’re talking about hundreds a day.

As a surgeon, you get used to it and immediately assess who needs your attention and who can do without it. You’re not sensitive to it right now because you’re shielded by survival mechanisms. But you understand that someday, after the war, a terrible realization will come to you: it’s a hundred maimed people, lives, and personal stories every day. Of course, compared to the infantry, doctors shouldn’t complain about working hard. But I think these working conditions do affect one’s mental state.

And the second emotion I want to share. When you work relatively close to the front line, your potential patients are very close: that forest, that village where our guys are stationed. Beyond them is the enemy. It takes him about ten minutes to get to you if the guys let him. And every evening, as you go to sleep, you understand that tomorrow you will wake up only because someone is standing to death in that forest and not letting the enemy through. It’s an unprecedented feeling of dependence on someone else. And a real fear, actually.

So when these fighters are brought to you as wounded, you don’t greet them the same way as you do in peacetime. In a hospital in Kyiv, they bring you a patient you have to work on. It’s a job, a hassle, a bother, sleepless nights, exhaustion. Here, they bring you a person you owe your life to. You look at his wounds and understand: this person took bullets and shrapnel that were flying at you too. And it was much harder for him than for you, but the fighter did his job well.

This is what motivates me a lot. I look at the military through these eyes right now. And this is the fundamental difference between my medical work before 2014 and now.

Unfortunately, not everyone makes it. A significant number of the wounded die on their way to receive qualified medical care, often due to massive bleeding. What’s the bigger issue here: the inadequate training of combat medics or the fighters who end up next to such wounded? Is it the poor medical supplies? Or the shortage of evacuation vehicles that, when destroyed by Russian fire, are not officially registered as out of service until a formal investigation, which can take up to six months?

It’s not that simple. There’s a somewhat distorted image of military medicine in the media and social networks. The reality is very different. Perhaps it’s natural to seek simple answers and explanations for complex things. But it doesn’t work that way here.

I want to present three philosophical theses that are general principles.

Firstly, fatigue is not a measure of work. If someone gets very tired, it may be because they are doing a poor job, and resources are being allocated incorrectly.

Secondly, losses are often not proportionate. We lose the wounded whom we shouldn’t lose under any circumstances.

When a fighter sustains injuries incompatible with life, no one can save him. There are many such wounded individuals. They die either immediately after the trauma or very shortly afterwards. This does not depend on the quality of assistance. There are anatomical injuries that always lead to death.

But there is so-called preventable death that could have been avoided if all adequate measures had been taken. The motto of tactical medicine is a zero percent preventable mortality rate. Unfortunately, many wounded individuals die due to the imperfection of assistance, incompetence, and the absence of even basic knowledge, mistakes, and quite often, elementary ones. This should not happen, and it’s terrible.

Thirdly, we are in a war in which we are defending ourselves, our right to exist, our freedom, and our values. Quite often, because of the righteousness of this struggle, the way we do things is automatically perceived as right by the media. This is a big mistake.

For example?

When the President’s office appoints a musician, volunteer, activist, and wonderful person to the position of the Medical Forces Commander, we get a person who, by his professional and visionary qualities, does not correspond to the position. Focus on personality rather than the functionality of the system, and institutional capacity it’s a completely wrong approach.

We see a member of parliament who, for some reason, goes to the front lines and interacts with the military. It looks good, but it’s entirely meaningless and harmful.

We see that well-known volunteers, extraordinary personalities, can sincerely make mistakes, manipulate, and distort facts while giving their version of reality much more publicity than their opponents can.

We see how a famous volunteer hospital tries to further promote its name, even though it’s not actually better than others.

See also: How negative personnel selection reduces the combat-ready of the Ukrainian army

We see how a qualified pediatric anesthesiologist begins to position himself as a tactical medicine expert and offers courses. He’s a great doctor, but he has very little to do with tactical medicine, spouts nonsense, and ultimately does harm.

We see how a wonderful legal organization, created by a good person, submits proposals to the Medical Forces Commander, but its analysis of military medicine is entirely irrelevant, and its conclusions are incorrect.

When it comes to medicine, our sincere desire to save everyone does not necessarily mean we are doing it correctly. The work of an inspired combat medic or a doctor who, leaving a civilian hospital, volunteers on the front line, may be highly publicized but can be incompetent and, despite the best intentions, lead to the loss of the wounded or disabilities where it shouldn’t occur. This happens often.

But try to say that, and society will erupt in outrage.

It’s crucial for society to understand that one’s contribution to the fight, defense, or reforms doesn’t automatically make all subsequent actions and statements better or more significant. Similarly, having access to the media, being media-savvy, managing social media, or the popularity of a particular post doesn’t make it more correct or meaningful. This applies to me as well.

So when we talk about losses on the front from a medical perspective, we need to have a clear understanding of what we’re specifically referring to.

Of course, I mean: why do the wounded who should survive end up dying?

There’s another thing here. If you ask the heads of hospitals about their losses, they will tell you the truth: in mobile hospitals located along the front line, 99% of the wounded survive. The problem is that they genuinely rejoice at this figure without understanding what it really means. It means that for various reasons, they are not bringing in severely wounded individuals to the hospital but those who would have survived anyway.

The average survival rate in the hospital after surgeries, without understanding who was operated on and how severe their injuries were, doesn’t tell us anything. It’s just the average temperature in the hospital.

But if we take, for example, isolated limb injuries, like all leg injuries over a month, and count all those who were brought to the hospital and those who died on the battlefield; analyze the causes of death: whether timely help was provided, whether it was adequate on the battlefield — then we will see the real picture of medical care for leg injuries. By analyzing the causes of death, we can draw conclusions: whether fighters are trained to provide this first aid under fire on the battlefield and whether they have the means to do so. Next, we will analyze who died during transportation, who did not have their blood loss restored, who was treated incorrectly at the stabilization point or in the hospital. Only by analyzing both the deceased and those who survived after a specific anatomical injury, we can talk about how well we are working.

Just presenting the figure that 99% survive in hospitals is manipulation. And, to my great shame, the Commander of the Medical Forces was reckless to mention it even at international meetings.

Let’s talk in more detail about each of the reasons. Why do the wounded who should survive end up dying? What about the training of the Ukrainian military? Aren’t we supposed to be moving towards NATO standards?

We are not moving towards NATO, and we have never done it. It’s like playing a house of cards. Whoever the house collapses on, loses. It’s the same with reforms. Officials who want to implement them try to pull out a card (reform) in such a way that everything remains the same.

What was the Ministry of Social Policy of Ukraine doing under anyone’s leadership during the entire time we’ve been talking about the Medical and Social Expert Commission or the Military Medical Commission? Its level of reform consisted of replacing the word “disabled” with the phrase “person with disabilities” in regulatory documents. However, this has no effect on eliminating bribery and kickbacks within the system. Nobody wants to touch that because it would affect many “respected” individuals.

As for military medicine, the first organization that needs to be eliminated, and the people associated with it vetted, is the Military Medical Academy. The purpose of this artificially created construct is unclear. It lacks anything military, medical, or academic. The individuals holding budget-funded positions there are incompetent. Their measure of effectiveness is publishing manuals and textbooks that nobody reads.

Before the war, military doctors were not better than others because nobody trained them properly. They always worked in hospitals in several cities. The paradox is that military surgeons had never treated trauma in their lives, and it didn’t bother anyone. In Kyiv, cases of stab and gunshot wounds, as well as severe car accidents, were always taken to the 17th Hospital and the Main Military Clinical Hospital. Meanwhile, in the military hospital, they treated hernias and cholecystitis and performed planned vein removal surgeries for military personnel and their family members.

Only starting in 2014 doctors with experience begin to appear there. But overall, our military medicine has always lagged behind. Now, during the war, these people, without adequate knowledge, and a lion’s share without knowledge of the English language, are starting to learn surgery from scratch and repeating all the mistakes from which global surgery has already drawn conclusions.

For the sake of fairness, it must be said that there are now several quite worthy places. There are very worthy doctors, departments, and hospitals that have organized their work at a high level.

Can you name them?

First of all, the Kharkiv Hospital. There are good sprouts of military medicine in Zaporizhzhia. There are truly professionals along the front line. I would gladly learn from some of them myself. But in general, we are still very far from the practices that exist in modern hospitals and clinics around the world.

What about Dnipro?

I wish it were better. Sadly, it’s a fact.

The key thing that should be present now is the attitude toward the wounded, as I’ve already mentioned. It changes a lot during the provision of aid.

At Mechnikov Hospital, they say, “Thousands pass through us.” And if someone notices they make mistakes, a very dangerous argument immediately comes up: “How many have you operated on?”

Indeed, Mechnikov Hospital has processed the most wounded overall. And we don’t want to believe that they were all treated poorly. That there could have been a better service and a better attitude towards people. That the quality of surgical and medical care there is average. That in the modern world, medical decisions are made and surgical procedures are performed differently.

They are overwhelmed, with a constant stream of patients and a lot of attention directed towards them, and try to criticize them. Their response is often, “Who are you?”

This argument even comes up when talking to foreign colleagues who are shocked when patients from Ukraine come to them for treatment. Unfortunately, in the case of the hospital, the vast number of wounded does not lead to an evolution in treatment methods. A significant number of people prevent improvement, by not allowing criticism.

The stabilizing point and military hospital are more remote stages. Many of the wounded die due to improper care at the primary stage. This depends on combat medics or fighters who are nearby. Do they know how to apply a tourniquet, for example? If yes, where did they learn it? And what has the state done for this?

In general, we learn very little. This applies to both surgeons and combat medics. The course for a combat rescue fighter — something between an ordinary fighter and a combat medic — is 40 hours of training in tactical medicine. I am sure that no one goes through this today.

Does Ukraine recognize combat medics? Does it require them to undergo training?

Formally, there is training. Someone is preparing someone somehow. But it’s a matter of semantics. They barely prepare an ordinary fighter. A combat rescue fighter, well, something like that. A combat medic, if he has been trained for two days, he is lucky. And the war, the scale of aggression, is not an excuse here. It took nine years to build a system.

Where and how are they trained?

If you formally ask whether there are combat medics in the brigade and whether they have taken courses, the answer will be yes. But start digging into the details: how many hours were spent on training an ordinary fighter? According to “NATO standards,” an ordinary fighter should complete a seven-hour course, and a combat rescue fighter — a forty-hour course. This was hardly followed almost anywhere.

And who were the instructors who taught?

Right now, there are quite a few volunteer initiatives. Sometimes they have a very decent level of instruction. Many NGOs take this upon themselves and partially compensate for the problem. But for its systematic resolution, we need to first acknowledge that there is something wrong with the training and preparation of fighters, combat rescue fighters, combat medics, and even surgeons.

A training center was created with the participation of Mariana Bezuhla. It failed. Because she is an incompetent and overly active person who never brings things to completion and does more harm than good. The training center in Desna, which Bezuhla was also involved with and which started out quite optimistically, unfortunately, also folded. It didn’t fulfill its function because, in essence, there were no systemic changes, requirements for training, or instructors — nothing that would improve the quality and results of providing assistance. The training center was sustained by the enthusiasm of two or three fantastic instructors. One of them, Eugene Khrypko, tragically passed away in June 2022.

Last year, the Germans prepared a fantastic course for surgeons that cost hundreds of thousands of euros. They offered to send 16 surgeons for training to the Medical Forces Command. The response was: we don’t need 16, we will send 8. They say the Germans were shocked. Fortunately, they eventually sent all 16 for training. But the real need is for 160. The surgeons who went there, including the Chief Medical Officer of the Ministry of Defense, were thrilled.

The fact that we actually learn so little and are unaware of it can easily be extrapolated to society as a whole. This need is not realized, sincerely not understood by those who could make decisions about training. The same goes for combat training.

However, it’s worth noting that there are objective and subjective reasons for why we poorly prepare combat medics.

Regarding subjective reasons, first, we need a lot of them, and we wasted time and didn’t do this earlier. We have limited resources, and we need to train quickly, often without even having 40 hours for it.

Now, about the objective reasons. Even when the Americans and the British conducted training, they did it taking into account previous conflicts. The American standard of training did not consider that a patient might arrive at a hospital within 4-24 hours after being injured. In the American military, this happens within the first thirty minutes. The standard aimed to teach a soldier how to apply a tourniquet, and removing or changing it was supposed to be done by combat medics. This is how it’s taught all over the world. Only the war in Ukraine showed that a soldier in the field may physically be unable to reach a combat medic. This is a big problem in Ukraine now.

The Medical Forces Command prepared it, and Zaluzhnyi has already signed the order for changes in training and providing assistance. This problem was also recently discussed at the highest levels in the USA. Publications and changes in the training program of the American army will soon appear.

Do you have any questions about the contents of the first-aid kit? What are they? Why haven’t the contents of the first-aid kit changed yet? Who is responsible for this?

I’ll start with the root cause.

The leadership of the medical forces is an executive body within the General Staff. It is not represented in the government and has no authority for legislative or any other initiative regarding the formation of military medical policy. It only follows the instructions of the Ministry of Defense and the Ministry of Health.

The Ministry of Defense and the Ministry of Health no longer have the relevant directorates to shape policies, conduct analysis, write regulations, and, among other things, set standards for first-aid kits, training, and provisions. In other words, there is physically no one to shape policy in the field of military medicine.

See also: In the trap of silence, queues, and thousands of pieces of paper. How does the state test the families of fallen soldiers?

Due to their personal and competency characteristics, loyalty, complacency, and the absence of their own vision, the leaders of both ministries have no desire to change anything. The situation is such that the Minister of Defense, the Minister of Health, the Commander of the Medical Forces, and the hospital chief — anyone in a position today seems to perceive it as a reward for previous merits, for loyalty. And they see their task as following instructions and existing within the structure, rather than bringing about change.

The role of the Ministers of Defense and Health in the state is to bring about change. They have the resources to analyze the situation. But this is not happening now. As a result, our society remains a Soviet quasi-society, and the army is a small Red Army that cannot defeat the big Red Army.

Today, doctors face different tasks. It’s not just about doing their job; it’s about saving a wounded person who will die in Russia; it’s about ensuring that a soldier who ends up crippled in Russia doesn’t become like that here. We need to treat better and save more than Russians do.

If a doctor doesn’t have such a task, he won’t achieve victory. To do that, he needs to review his own approaches, start learning, and finally learn English. And to begin with, this needs to be understood. At every stage. We must implement standards, and organize provisions. Our winter jackets should be warmer than the Russian ones. Each of us should do our part better than our counterparts on the other side of the front line. No matter who you are.

What about Ukrainian medical supplies?

One of the first decisions of the Ministry of Health under Ulana Suprun in 2016 was changes to the standards of military first-aid kits. If the standard used to be the Esmarch bandage, the new standard allowed the Ministry of Defense and military economic entities to purchase NATO first-aid kits.

But what did the Ministry of Defense do? Instead of buying American tourniquets, they filled first-aid kits with products from the Russian AV-Farma and unnecessary and harmful Kyivguma tourniquets. Each type of troops, each brigade bought whatever they wanted. There is no malicious intent on the part of Reznikov or Bezuhla in this. “Little Ukrainians” who were responsible for procurement did this for kickbacks. They were vile, greedy, and completely amoral; they purchased everything indiscriminately.

So, since 2016, we have the standard. It can be slightly improved regarding medicines, as approaches have changed. But even now, no one prohibits some brigades from buying American-branded first-aid kits.

There are also objective and subjective reasons here. There’s a mobilized chief medical officer of a brigade or battalion. He’s bewildered and doesn’t yet know what to do. They tell him to come and get first-aid kits. He receives them and signs the papers — well, whatever they issued, that’s what they issued. Very few refuse to put their signature. To prevent unnecessary items from ending up in the first-aid kit, a specific official or chief medical officer has to step up and say, “No, it won’t be like this.” And there are such individuals. Thanks to these chief medical officers, procurement officers, and commanders, some brigades are excellently equipped.

What about blood transfusions?

It’s not all that straightforward here. It’s a huge and speculative topic. And here, I will defend the Chief Military Surgeon.

I have a few questions that can explain my position on blood.

Do we know how many thousands of combat medics are on the front line? Do we know who and how trained them in blood transfusion (and whether they did)? Do they have enough training hours? Can they assess the need for a blood transfusion and perform it correctly to avoid exsanguination (the minimum training time is counted in weeks)? God forbid that a combat medic in Ukraine, with his qualifications and level of training, would now learn to convert a tourniquet.

Well, one last thing: where to get so much blood?

Therefore, all this blood noise, unfortunately, does more harm. And try saying that. Due to the extraordinary media popularity of those who raise it, they’ll kick you here. However, all the footage and posts on social media about successful blood transfusions to the wounded that I’ve seen indicate obvious medical errors, including unnecessary transfusions.

Meanwhile, the worst part is that doctors at stabilization points don’t perform blood transfusions. In places where there’s a refrigerator, a heater, all the competencies, and logistical delivery capabilities, blood is transfused in one out of ten cases at best. And this is a huge problem. Due to incompetence and a lack of understanding, doctors don’t do this. Many mobilized doctors have never done this in their lives, so they’re afraid. Besides, blood needs to be recorded and a ton of paperwork filled out. It’s easier to send the patient to the next stage — to the hospital. And this is truly disgusting.

How does the evacuation process work? Do everyone understand their roles and tasks? Is this route established?

Everything is much better here than is usually described. In fact, what annoys me most about evacuation is not so much its organization (there are no problems with that), but the fact that the army is supplied with transport on a residual principle. It really pisses me off when you see new cars on the roads of rear cities, and in the war zone, we use vehicles purchased by volunteers, broken, with right-hand drive. Today, we use unarmored vehicles. Although in war, in principle, all transport should be armored. And wounded individuals, according to the standard, should still be evacuated safely.

It looks somewhat like a family buying a new apartment and instead of installing doors, they purchase expensive, unnecessary gadgets and play with them. Then, “Oops! A drunk neighbor is getting into our place.”

So, maybe we should first and foremost develop a state mechanism for adequately equipping the army.

How does the state take care of the wounded? Do we have rehabilitation facilities? If so, where are they located?

The state always has a desire to create something to cut the red tape. The rehabilitation center is no exception. But rehabilitation after neurotrauma is one story. After bone and limb injuries, it’s a completely different one. Moreover, the patient needs to undergo recovery every day. This means that a rehabilitologist, kinesiotherapist, masseur, physical therapist and rehabilitation doctor should be available where the patient lives. The wounded individual needs to learn to walk again. And they can’t go to Lviv because they’ve cut the red tape and created a super-modern prosthetics center there. Okay, they made a prosthesis for them. But what’s next? In towns and small cities where veterans return, there are no physical rehabilitation professionals.

Therefore, the main problem is not to create a rehabilitation center but to train rehabilitologists. Our new Ukrainian religion should be all about education. And that’s where the big problem lies. As I’ve already said, we don’t realize our need for learning. We don’t understand how far we are from the kind of rehabilitation it should be.

What should the Ministry of Health and the National Health Service of Ukraine do for this?

Two things. First, establish requirements for training. And second, ensure that all of this doesn’t turn into a Military Medical Academy, into the profanation of education and unnecessary formality. We need to align ourselves with Western training systems for some time.

There’s one more thing: our European colleagues ask why we send so few wounded individuals abroad for treatment, and when we do send them, why it’s done so late. European and American hospitals in Europe, where departments were specially created for us, stand empty. Funding is allocated for the free treatment of Ukrainian veterans, but Ukraine doesn’t send them.


It’s a rare case where I have no grievances against the Ministry of Health. The Ministry has established a scheme for sending people abroad, and it’s quite straightforward. It requires a letter from the hospital where the patient is staying, stating that they need treatment abroad. I can’t imagine what’s going on in the heads of hospital directors, but there are far fewer of these letters today than Europe’s capacity to accept our wounded for treatment. Because it’s a hassle, you have to fill out paperwork. Apathy and incompetence.

Two words that should be tattooed on every Ukrainian today are “concern” and “competence.”

Does the state fully cover the treatment of military personnel who have received explosive injuries with amputations?

I don’t know this for sure. All the wounded individuals related to my unit were taken care of, and no corners were cut. If such cases did happen, I wasn’t tracking them.

I know that the Kyiv-based clinics Oberig and Dobrobut provide free assistance to the wounded. The second clinic advertises this, while the first one doesn’t, but they seem to have a whole department dedicated to severe traumatic brain injuries. All the media-covered cases — blind injuries, amputations, the most severe ones — are handled by Oberig. In general, I have the impression that private healthcare providers behave quite nobly, and it deeply moves me.

11 billion UAH (297 million USD) of unused funds were returned to the budget last year. In your opinion, where should the Ministry of Health and the National Health Service of Ukraine redirect these funds?

Of course, first and foremost, to the military. The yard starts with the fence, and security is the top priority.

I don’t know if it’s appropriate to talk about this, but we are waging this war at the expense of US taxpayers. Yes, the Budapest Memorandum, international support. Yes, an unprecedented situation of a nuclear state attacking a non-nuclear one. And we expect that the progressive world will help us. But what are we doing ourselves to become stronger?

Currently, we’re acting like a child who is in a lot of pain, crying and screaming, and the adults are coming to help. As a country, we don’t seem to have the capability to review our earnings and expenditures, our tax policy, or our state support.

Why should a soldier or infantryman suffer and not someone in the rear? If only the army is fighting, we will lose. Our freedom requires our continuous involvement in organizing our own lives.

It’s relevant to talk about rotation here. How much endurance do we have in reserve? Where can replacements and replenishments come from? Are there enough human medical resources?

I’ll say something unpopular: medics need to shut up and stop crying. The infantry has it worse. Of course, being in a combat zone, a medic risks being targeted. Yes, among my colleagues, many have died. Not to mention the combat medics, on whom the burden and danger are the greatest. By the way, the survival of a wounded person depends more on them than on the surgeon. The most important role here is the soldier’s: if he’s nearby, applies a tourniquet, and stops the bleeding, he has saved the wounded. In second place is the combat medic. These two people are responsible for 90% of all survival cases.

The skill of the surgeon determines only a small percentage. No matter how many patients I’ve operated on, no matter how exhausted I am, I operate on them only because they were brought to me alive. And this happened thanks to the work of combat medics. So, they are my heroes.

Being a doctor in a war is a complex and risky job. But it’s a job. The infantry is the one fighting. Therefore, there should be no complaints from us — regarding training, work, or rotations. We have the reserve to work much more effectively, more, and better. We need to learn more. We’re not working hard enough.

If everything is so bad, why hasn’t it fallen apart? Why has it held together?

Thanks to the soldiers and officers who conscientiously do their jobs. Quietly, without unnecessary noise and showing off. And even in the Ministry of Health and the National Health Service of Ukraine, there are hard workers, small and inconspicuous, who don’t become heroes in news reports but do their job well. Thanks to combat medics who pull the wounded out of the very depths of hell. We don’t know their names. But Ukraine is still standing because of such soldiers and officers who do their job a little better than we expected from them.

Not long ago, I had to operate on a patient with a very severe, life-threatening vascular injury in a limb. In the operating room, after removing the dressing applied by the combat medic, I saw how effectively the bleeding had been stopped by tamponading. The combat medic had assessed the situation and performed flawlessly. I called the brigade and asked them to pass on my admiration. He saved that patient, not me. I was just there in the operating room.

Usually, we pay attention to complex cases and grieve over losses. We focus on shortcomings. At the same time, despite their hellish work, I often hear that combat medics go abroad to learn. This is a compliment to both the combat medics and the system. It commands respect and brings joy.

In the healthcare of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, there have been areas of growth. One and a half years ago, this wasn’t the case. Despite all my criticisms and shortcomings, it’s worth mentioning the positives. This includes super-professional doctors in stabilization points, as well as the inconspicuous but highly important work of the Medical Forces Command, officers who handle evacuations. Over the past one and a half years, this system — routing, sharing data about the injured, collaboration with civilian institutions, and tracking the fate of the wounded at all stages — has been established from scratch. It’s designed to analyze, request assistance, and adapt to the challenges brought by the war.

Perhaps not without mistakes and difficulties, but the framework of the system, which can be improved, has been created. It hasn’t fallen apart; it has endured. Overall, I would view both the publicity of medical issues in society, criticism, and disputes positively. It’s good because it helps refine the system. We will win when there are no indifferent people among Ukrainians. The more Ukrainians contribute in some way to supporting the army, and addressing problems, both within the Armed Forces and the medical forces specifically, the closer we get to victory. But for this to happen, we need to acknowledge our flaws, discuss them, and seek ways to improve our competencies and knowledge.

Originally posted by Alla Kotlyar on Zn.ua. Translated and edited by the UaPosition – Ukrainian news and analytics website

See also: How Ukrainian soldiers after being injured are kept in military units with a salary of 500 UAH per month instead of rehabilitation

Avatar photo


An independent media focused on Ukraine.
Follow us on social media:

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Share This

Share this post with your friends!