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World Health Day: Humanitarian Center helps save child hearts



April 7 is World Health Day. This year, it is held under the slogan “Health for everybody”, since the accessibility of medicine is the fundamental principle of the World Health Organization that established this holiday.

“No one should make a choice between death and financial difficulties. No one should choose between food and medicine,” said Director-General of WHO, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, when explaining the 2018 slogan.

Today, about four million residents of Donbas region require medical help, but do not have access to it. They do not have a choice between food and treatment at all. More than a million of people from the east of Ukraine are constantly undernourished. They try to survive. The Rinat Akhmetov Humanitarian Center has been helping these people for four years.

The Center regularly delivers food packages to the “grey zone”; it has already been issued more than 12 million of such packages. The Center provides critically ill children with vital medications, helps with urgent surgeries, rescue and rehabilitation of injured children.

Thanks to this support, many children were able to return to full-fledged life. The Center provided targeted help for treatment to about 11 thousand people, 5 thousand of whom were children whose lives were saved.

One of them is a one-year-old Kostia from Mariupol. The baby was diagnosed with congenital heart defect. The doctors said that he would not survive without the operation. And the cost of an occluder implant for heart defect closure exceeds the family income by 66 times.

“This is horrible; this is too much for me. I was shocked! This is beyond my power to raise such money,” said Kostia’s mother Svitlana.

Then the family applied to the Center, where they were provided with assistance for the operation, which was carried out in one of the best Heart Center in the country – the Amosov Heart Institute. Now Mykyta is healthy, he grows and develops normally and pleases his parents.

“Without surgery, without this help, my son would no longer be with us. Thank you, Rinat Akhmetov, for granting life to my child," said Svitlana, the baby’s mother.

Recovery was possible thanks to the “Healthy Heart” Program, according to which 40 children have received assistance for heart surgery. In total, over a million of people’s lives have been saved within the work of the Rinat Akhmetov Humanitarian Center.