The Program consists of three main goals: 1) To establish Birth Defects (BD) Surveillance systems in two oblasts (provinces) (Rivne and Lutsk); 2) To improve the health care and prevention of BD, and 3) To establish a Ukrainian Alliance (UA) for the Prevention of BD.
Ukraine Location Map. In blue, regions with emerging population based birth defects surveillance systems
The implementation of a two-year plan began in late 1998 and conceptually is divided into semesters. The first progress report was concerned with the development of an infrastructure (staff, materials, recruitment of Ukrainian and U.S. advisors); the second progress report concerned the recruitment of Ukrainian program leaders for training in the U.S. This progress report concerns developments during the third semester.
Reaching Decision Makers. The Premier Lady of Ukraine,
Mrs. L. Kuchma and Dr. S. Shevchuk (Parliamentarian)
viewing digital images (new technology) illustrating birth
defects of children born in Volyn shown by Dr. H. Vashchylin
(General Director of the Volyn Oblast Children's Medical
Regarding BD Surveillance, we capitalized on a Ukrainian reality - an abundance of neonatologists, pediatricians and medical geneticists. The plethora of physicians will enhance surveillance which will translate into better care and prevention. Our strategy was three-fold: a) charge neonatologists with the task of early BD detection and care, b) charge pediatricians with the task of coordinated long term health care (medical home), and c) charge medical geneticists to enhance diagnostic accuracy expanded by a search for causes and formulation of prevention and amelioration plans.
Regarding improving BD health care, our strategy was to develop and make accessible timely, accurate and context specific information resources, particularly those of electronic nature.
Regarding the creation of a Ukainian Alliance, our strategy was to catalyze interactions among three categories of groups - professionals, mainly experts in neonatology, medical genetics, pediatrics and child development - patients, parents and organizations that have first hand knowledge of the impact of BD and - decision makers from Ukraine and beyond that have or can provide resources for better care and prevention of BD.
The objectives and work-plan of the program, as reported here, were met in a timely manner. The report consists of two parts: an Illustrated Narrative concerned with Landmark Events and Performance Indicators and a Progress Report by Objectives.
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