• Українською
  • Access to health services for people with disabilities is the focus of the Healthcare Guarantee Program
    Ministry of Healthcare of Ukraine, posted 02 December 2021 11:21

    December 3 is the International Day of Persons with Disabilities. Medical care for these people, as well as for everyone else, must be available without critical financial costs. And also - available in the true sense.

    The National Health Service of Ukraine adheres to the principle of barrier-free access to timely healthcare for everyone, regardless of their status, identity or other affiliation. This approach has become the basis of the Healthcare Guarantee Program, which provides free medical services to Ukrainians.

    That is why in 2021 the accessibility of the medical institution for patients with disabilities has become a mandatory requirement for concluding an agreement with the National Health Service of Ukraine (NHSU).

    "Medical facilities operating under the Healthcare Guarantee Program must be equipped with ramps, elevators, have equipped toilets, accessible navigation and provide a person in a wheelchair with the opportunity to move around the hospital on his/her own.

    The NHSU does not enter into agreements with institutions that cannot provide unimpeded access. This was a good incentive and a step towards accessibility. And it has improved physical access to medical institutions for people with disabilities," said Tetiana Boyko, deputy head of the National Health Service of Ukraine.

    The NHSU always works in the interests of the patient, formulating requirements so that medical facilities are accessible and barrier-free for all.

    This includes access to healthcare for the elderly, pregnant women, mothers and fathers with strollers, young children and people with injuries. According to various estimates, from 30 to 50% of the population belong to less mobile groups. All of these people should not be denied access to healthcare, which is why it is so important to develop barrier-free principle in healthcare facilities. The right of access cannot be violated due to physical barriers.

    Patient autonomy begins with unimpeded access to medical services. A person in a wheelchair, on crutches or with a pram should be able to enter any room on their own, without expecting help from medical staff or outsiders.

    After all, accessibility is not just a formality. This is a requirement of a civilized society in which all people must have equal rights and opportunities.