Civic, anti-corruption and patients’ organizations urge Olha Bohomolets and the members of the Health Care Committee of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine not to discredit the reform in the field of healthcare: medicines and vaccines procurement through international organizations. This is mentioned in the open letter by the charities ‘Patients of Ukraine’ and ‘All-Ukrainian Network of People Living with HIV as well as Transparency International Ukraine, the Anti-Corruption Action Centre and the Reanimation Package of Reforms.
“Today, when the procurement of medicines and vaccines through international organizations is beginning to show its efficiency, some deputies from the Health Care Committee manipulate the facts and sometimes even knowingly publish false information. The process of procurement must not be politicized because lives of Ukrainians depend on it,” noted Oleksandra Ustinova, board member of the Anti-Corruption Action Centre.
For instance, civic activists have pointed out the false statement made by the committee concerning the purchase price of ALVOTINIB drug (INN: ). According to the committee, the wholesale price of this medicine is 82.67 hryvnias. However, this is not true. According to the registry of prices, one pill costs ten times more: 820.67 hryvnias. Besides, an international organization has purchased LMATINIB 400mg for a price 20 times lower than the one given by the Ministry of Healthcare of Ukraine in 2014 and 10 times lower than the declared price in Ukraine.
Public representatives have once again drawn attention to the 620 million hryvnias in savings achieved since the medicines and vaccines procurement through international organizations started, the lowering of procurement prices (some of the drugs were purchased for prices more than 20 times lower than the ones in 2014), the dismantling of corruption schemes and the introduction of new tender participants. It is also important to stress that international organizations have purchased more than 67% of the medicines directly from the producers. A detailed analysis of the new procurement process was published in the report of the Anti-Corruption Action Center.
”It is not time to sow discord or to spread false information about the reforms of the Ministry of Healthcare of Ukraine. The ministry, deputies and civic organizations need to work together so that seriously ill Ukrainians can get the medicines they need. The procurement reform is a chance for Ukrainian patients to get drugs untainted by corruption,” said Olha Stefanyshyna, Executive Director of the charity ‘Patients of Ukraine’. ‘Discrediting the procurement process in early 2017 will prevent patients from getting the medicines they need and politicians engaged in the process of derailing it should be prepared to take responsibility for the lives of the patients,’ she added.
It is also worth noting that the successful experience of procurement through international organizations in Ukraine is being adopted by the neighboring countries. Moldova has, for instance, started the same procedure this year.