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A Tale of two Ukraines- Health Care in War-Torn Lugansk and Peaceful Kiev

This is the story of two Ukraines, but it’s not the tired and typical before and after the coup tome. This is a side by side view of two Ukraines as they stand today in December 2017. Looking at it this way, you have to decide which Ukraine is the terrorist entity and which Ukraine works to save and better the lives of its people.

You get to tell me which Ukraine would make a good partner for the US, Europe, Russia, and the rest of the world. Which Ukraine would you want for your neighbor or to come to that BBQ?

For every story there has to be a backbone of facts it rides on, doesn’t there? And yet, despite a glut of facts, both you and the rest of the world are sometimes expected to ignore the grim realities and cozy up to the dysfunctional monsters of our time. And not just cuddle up but lean over and give em’ a big smooch too. Let’s look at our Ukraine(s).

One Ukraine is centered in Kiev. It has not been attacked by a foreign nation since WWII. It has received and squandered tens of billions of dollars in IMF loans and international support. More to the point, tens of billions in aid have been stolen and will never be repaid. The money will never be used for reforms or to rebuild the economy.

Instead of starting the reforms that the aid was tied to, Poroshenko’s Ukraine has consistently and persistently lowered the standard of living of its own people. This Ukraine is a country that a failed state like Somalia can look down on today.

This Ukraine led the world in some medical treatments and now has consistently dropped its own health care standards and system to rival 3rd world countries.


Ulana Suprun

Even more striking is that under the watchful eye of the Ukrainian-American Diaspora’s Ulana Suprun, Ukraine’s Health Minister has pushed Ukraine to legalize the organ trade. Ukraine used to lead the world in the illegal organ trade but it has now legalized it and the Ukrainian government now takes your loved one’s organs without consent.

Suprun’s idea of health reform is destroying the health care for heart patients by denying them medications for life-threatening conditions. Borys Todurov, head of the Heart Institute in Kiev and a heart surgeon accused Suprun of negligence that he claimed has led to thousands of patients’ deaths. “I absolutely responsibly declare (and I can repeat it in court) that your negligence took more lives of Ukrainians than the war in recent years,” Todurov said.”

Suprun has likewise destroyed cancer treatment in Ukraine. She did this by systematically refusing to purchase the medications needed to treat cancers, heart conditions, and disease.

Her idea of giving children a great start was to just not purchase the vaccinations children normally receive against childhood diseases. To what extent you might ask? Documented vaccinations dropped from 96% in 2007 to 20% in 2017.

To really understand the level of criminality US citizen and Diaspora activist Ulana Suprun has been involved with in Ukraine, you need to go back to February 2014. Ukraine was considered a friendly nation by the USA. Ulana Suprun violated the Neutrality Act by intervening and helping to overthrow the sitting president, Victor Yanukovych. The last time US citizens were prosecuted for this was in 2016. They are serving 25 year sentences for their trouble. Why isn’t she being charged?

How does this translate as this philosophy of death is passed into Ukrainian society?

Meet Alexandr Chernova man the Observer branded as Ukraine’s Dr. Mengele. In the same fashion that every western medical doctor subscribes to the Hippocratic Oath, Ukraine did too. The stresses on Ukrainian society with the new Ukrainian nationalist leaders have changed society to the point that doctors who have sworn to do no harm, now seek to harm, maim, and kill people they perceive as their enemies.

According to Chernov “Having ensured my own security, my number one priority was to inflict damage on enemy patients—to the soldiers on the enemy’s side—by means of medication.”

If I am making it sound like WWII Nazism is making a comeback in Ukraine, it’s because it is. Most of the parents of today’s Ukrainian leadership were Nazi soldiers and officers. They fought for Hitler and after WWII they slaughtered another 30,000 Ukrainian civilians in their homes.

It took more than 5 years for the Soviets to root out the OUNb and UPA (WWII era Nazi organizations) after WWII. They have come back with a vengeance to Ukraine. Ask Ulana Suprun, her father was a Nazi soldier. Before she came to Ukraine she served the UWC (Ukrainian World Congress) which still celebrates its dead Waffen SS concentration camp guards and teach their children to emulate the actions of WWII Genocidists.


Poroshenko, right, in photo used by Bloomberb for the article quoted.

These issues are part of the reason that even Bloomberg is questioning why “The West Backed the Wrong Man in Ukraine.

The other Ukraine, in Donbass, has worked to raise the standard of living of its people during wartime crisis and under military attack.

Until the Soviet Union dissolved in 1991, Ukraine boasted some of the best hospitals in the Soviet Union. These were some of the best research, teaching, and treatment hospitals in the world for lung treatment and cancer.

In 2014, after the May referendum to demand federalization from Ukraine failed to be accepted by Ukraine, both regions of Donbass, Lugansk Oblast (region) and Donetsk Oblast were forced to declare independence from Kiev’s Ukraine.


RGA (regional administrator) Head Ivan Prikhodko told journalists that Kiev’s Junta forces fired on Oktyabrsky quarter in Kuibyshev Raion of Donetsk, damaging Hospital №21, saying, “For about an hour last night, the enemy opened fire on Oktyabrsky quarter, hitting Hospital №21 with three mortar shells, which damaged the building façade and window glazing. The staff evacuated all patients to the basement. Heavy shelling continued through the night; it ended at about 04.00. There’s no reports yet of any casualties”. This is the fifth bombardment of Hospital №21 by junta militants. Nevertheless, the hospital never shut down; now, it continues to provide medical assistance to local residents. (Note: This item is dated 8 August 2015).

Ukraine’s nationalist volunteers (neo-nazi, nationalist, Nazi) attacked both regions. Because of the attacks (which have not stopped in almost 4 years despite ceasefires), both regions formed new republics called Lugansk Peoples’ Republic (LNR) and Donetsk Peoples’ Republic (DNR).

Since 2014 in LNR, banks and normal services were closed across the region. In the medical field; doctors, nurses, surgeons, administrators, ambulance drivers, and personnel from across the medical industry worked without pay for long periods. These professionals kept the hospitals running and treating patients.

During the worst fighting of the war in 2014, hospital ambulance crews went into the front line areas and picked up wounded soldiers and Kiev’s now trademark civilian casualties even though there was no way or means for them to be paid.

With the banks closed and Kiev cut off social benefits like pensions, there were no means for most of the general populace to pay for even medications.

In Lugansk People’s Republic (LNR), hospitalization, treatments, and even surgeries remained free. Inside the hospitals, doctors and nurses pooled and shared resources and even medications that quickly became almost impossible to acquire.

This was when Russia started doing its now famous humanitarian aid convoys into LNR and DNR. The lifesaving aid brought medical equipment and medications desperately needed because contrary to international law, Kiev shut down pathways for even heart medication or insulin to reach the besieged region.

The hospitals, in turn, dispense the medications at no cost to the patient. As long as the prescribed medication has been brought over by Russia it is free. This alone has saved countless lives in LNR. Russia has also brought in state of the art diagnostic equipment.

What constitutes a legitimate patient in LNR? In Kiev’s Ukraine, if you are from Donbass, you are discriminated against and people have been refused treatment. In LNR, if you show up at the hospital, they will spare no expense and treat you.


Donetsk hospital prepares for large influx of injured and severely wounded patients.

It doesn’t matter where you are from. People have been and are crossing the contact line between Ukraine and Donbass to go to LNR hospitals for medical treatment, surgeries (which they can’t afford in Ukraine), and even to deliver babies. As of August 2017, Lugansk Republic Hospital had delivered over 135 babies for women that live in [Kiev] Ukraine -controlled areas.

LNR surgeons treat Ukrainian soldiers brought in as well as they treat any other patient. There is no difference in the level of care given to anyone. Lugansk hospitals treat all foreigners with the same level of care as you would expect in any western hospital and for the most part, without the unlimited resources available in the west.

Even though the Lugansk People’s Republic is in its 3rd year of development as a nation, it is picking up the tab for hospitalization within its borders at the same time it has been fighting a war to keep nationalists from killing the people that live here.

The availability and commitment to treating sick or injured hospital patients is only one metric that tells what kind of society you are dealing with. There are many other metrics and we’ll start exploring [them] further in the next segments.

But tell me honestly, which Ukraine would you want to deal with? Which one do you think its own people support? Who would you have over to your BBQ? Sometimes, the choices are really that simple.

by G.H. Eliason

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